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Lack of jurors delays Waterloo murder trial

Finger Lakes Times

The murder trial of Emerson “John” Tohafjian, who is accused of killing two people in a Waterloo apartment house this summer, has been delayed.

The trial, which started Friday with jury selection, was suspended Monday when the pool of candidates was exhausted before 12 jurors and three alternates could be picked. More potential jurors will be brought in next Monday, with opening statements scheduled for Dec. 11.

Court officials said 11 jurors were chosen as of Monday afternoon. The remaining juror and alternates are expected to be chosen Dec. 10.

Tohafjian, 48, faces charges of first- degree murder, assault, burglary, intimidating a victim or witness, criminal use of a firearm, and criminal contempt. Those charges stem from the July 10 shootings that killed his ex-girlfriend, Lori McConnell, and Chuck Andrus at a Virginia Street house. Karen Zdunko, Andrus’ girlfriend, was injured in the shooting.

Court officials said 200 county residents received a jury summons. Some of those can postpone jury duty for the first time by going online or calling the court. Subsequent postponements are on a case-by-case basis.

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