It took a full day of jury selection Tuesday before a panel of seven women and five men, plus two male alternates, was seated to decide the fate of a man accused of killing another man and wounding a second in 2017.
Prosecutors have charged Kevin Rauls, 28, with capital murder, first-degree battery and committing a terroristic act in connection with the Sept. 10, 2017, shooting death of Roderick Burnett and injuries to Douglas Porter. Rauls has pleaded not guilty.
Opening statements and testimony began Tuesday morning in Fifth Division Circuit Court with Jodi Raines Dennis presiding.
Rauls is accused of firing shots at an SUV on the parking lot of the car wash at 2401 S. Olive St. that resulted in injuries to Burnett and Porter, who ran next door to the Sonic Drive-In where police and an ambulance were called. Burnett was pronounced dead at Jefferson Regional Medical Center; Porter was treated and released.
Rauls was arrested without incident Sept. 15, 2017, and was not questioned after he asked for an attorney.
According to a probable cause affidavit that was presented in district court, police found a white 2003 Chevrolet Tahoe inside one of the stalls at the car wash that had blood stains and bullet holes in it. When he was questioned, Porter said he was inside the vehicle when he was shot and said Burnett was the driver.
A witness to the incident told police Rauls was the driver of a dark-colored Nissan that was seen on the parking lot. The witness said he saw Burnett go to the Tahoe, retrieve a gun, and shoot at Rauls. The witness said that when the Nissan drove off, he heard additional shots.
A second witness said that when Burnett shot at Rauls, Rauls then parked the Nissan, got out of the car with a rifle and went behind the car wash. Other occupants also exited the vehicle and told police they heard multiple gunshots after Rauls and the other occupants got out of the vehicle.
Security video from Sonic showed one suspect shooting at the Tahoe from the west side of the car wash and a second suspect shooting at the vehicle from the east side behind the car wash stalls. Police reported that approximately 60 shell casings from both a rifle and pistols were recovered on the parking lot.
Prosecuting Attorney S Kyle Hunter and Deputy Prosecutor Bryan Achorn are representing the state during the trial while Rauls is represented by Little Rock attorney Bill James. The trial is expected to continue through Thursday.