Twelve jurors have been selected to serve in the capital murder case against a 20-year-old Pine Bluff man accused of kidnapping and killing Elvia Fragstein.
More than 50 Faulkner County residents were considered over the week by 20th Judicial District Prosecutor Carol Crews, senior deputy prosecutor John Hout and the defense team – attorneys William “Bill” James Jr. and Jeff Rosenzweig. By Friday afternoon, eight women and four men had been selected to serve on the death penalty case.
Tacori D. Mackrell is charged with capital murder, kidnapping, robbery and theft of property in connection to Fragstein’s disappearance and death. The 72-year-old Wooster woman was reported missing by her husband, Helmut, on July 7, 2018, and later found dead on Gibb Anderson Road in rural Jefferson County. Authorities believe Mackrell and his younger cousin, Robert L. Smith III, abducted the Wooster woman outside the Conway Commons shopping center on the day in question and killed her.
Though Smith was charged as and adult, he cannot face the death penalty because he was 16 years old at the time of the alleged offense, per Arkansas law.
Voire dire (jury selection) will continue Monday morning in Faulkner County Circuit Court as attorneys work to select five alternate jurors in Mackrell’s case. The death penalty trial is expected to begin on Thursday and is scheduled to run through Oct. 16.