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Jury Selected, Opening Statements Given in Jason Carter Trial

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa -- After being postponed for one day, the State of Iowa v. Jason Carter trial continued on Friday by seating a jury of 11 women and three men in the morning, continuing with opening statements and calling witnesses in the afternoon.

Marion County Attorney Ed Bull gave the first opening statement and laid out the timeline of the day Shirley Carter was murdered.

At the end of his statement, he asked the jury to get justice for Shirley Carter.

“There are clues that lead to only one conclusion. And based on the evidence at the conclusion, we will ask that you return a verdict -- Jason Carter guilty of murder in the first degree. As the facts will support it, the law will compel it and justice for Shirley will demand it,” Bull said.

Defendant Jason Carter's Attorney Christine Branstad made her opening statement next.

Branstad said the timeline the state presented of the day of Shirley Carter's murder doesn't make sense, and investigators did not follow up on other leads and evidence.

She asked the jury to decide if all of the clues really do point to one conclusion.

“What I will say to you at the conclusion of this case, I will ask you, “Do all clues really point to one conclusion or are there many that were ignored, or incomplete or insufficiently followed?”

"And at the end of this case, I will ask you, 'Can you really base a case on an incomplete investigation and clues that weren’t followed?' And I will ask you at that time to enter a verdict of not guilty,” Branstad said.

Attorneys also heard testimony from five witnesses that help to lay out the timelines of Bill, Shirley and Jason Carter.

Court reconvenes at 9 a.m. on Monday continuing with the state’s case.

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