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Decision on whether Donthe Lucas will go on trial for murder expected today

Posted: 10:12 AM, May 31, 2018
Updated: 2018-05-31 12:12:48-04


The preliminary hearing to decide of Donthe Lucas will go to trial for the murder of Kelsie Schelling continues at 2:30 Thursday afternoon in Pueblo.

Lucas  is the prime suspect in the disappearance and suspected murder of Kelsie Schelling, last seen more than five years ago. 

The first phase of the hearing started last week as evidence and testimony was presented by prosecutors. Closing arguments take place this afternoon before the judge announces a decision.

Evidence presented included text messages between Kelsie and Lucas in the days before she went missing, Kelsie’s medical records proving she was eight weeks pregnant along with an ultrasound shared with family and cell phone data showing both of their locations based on cell phone towers.

Investigators say it proved there was never a time when Lucas and Kelsie’s phones were not overlapping in the same cell phone areas. 

The FBI agent presenting this data also said there was a four hour window of time that both phones were unaccounted for and didn’t ping any cell phone towers, meaning they have no idea where both phones went for that window of time.

Kelsie’s mother believes that is when she was killed. 

"How far could she have been driven away from Pueblo in a four hour period, you know, that’s always in the back of my mind as far as that quiet time where there was no cell phone activity, no pings being recorded, four hours is a long time," Laura Saxton, Kelsie’s mother said.

Agent Kevin Torres, the lead investigator of this case from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation openly said he believes Donthe Lucas lured Kelsie down to Pueblo after finding out she was pregnant and murdered her by strangulation. 

He didn’t have any DNA evidence or the body to prove it just yet. 

He believes she was killed by strangulation based on statements given to her by Kelsie’s former co-workers who said she has shown up to work before with marks around her neck. She apparently told them her father tried to strangle her but Lucas was seen dropping her off at work. 

Kelsie’s mother said even though they haven’t found her daughter’s body, she believes there is enough evidence for this case to go to trial. 

"You can’t just let him go, you can’t just put the message out there that if you dispose of a body, if you hide it well enough, you’re going to get away with murder so I mean something is going to have to change in the way that the system handles cases like Kelsie’s," Saxton said.