Opening statements given in Daniel Clay murder trial

Opening statements given in Daniel Clay murder trial
Daniel Clay in court Nov. 2 (Source: WTOL)

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Opening statements from both sides were given this morning in the high-profile murder trial of Daniel Clay.

Daniel Clay is accused of killing Chelsea Bruck after a Halloween party on October 25, 2014.

Clay sat quietly as the prosecution described what he allegedly did to Chelsea in vivid detail. Prosecutor Michael Roehrig explained how Clay killed and disposed Chelsea's body and told the jury that witnesses can prove this.

The defense opened with a much shorter statement reminding the jury of their promise to be impartial and fair and that opening statements are not the same as evidence.

They went on to say Chelsea's facial fractures could be postmortem, showing that Clay had no intent to kill her and it's possible that the injuries were made after he tried to hide her body. The defense said that Chelsea's death was a tragic accident after rough consensual sex.

In all, the prosecution called 15 witnesses to the stand.

The prosecution first called Chelsea's mother Leannda Bruck to the stand. She described the day she and her other daughter went searching for Chelsea the Monday after the party.

Another witness was the man who found Chelsea's Poison Ivy costume, which the state says is a key piece of evidence.

The witness testified he found the costume in a secluded area while looking for scrap metal with a friend. A week later he alerted police.

Police used DNA on the costume to identify Daniel Clay as a suspect.

Defense attorney Russel Smith stated that Clay would testify in his own defense and reminded the jury that the burden of proof fell on the state.

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