By Marcia Moore
The Daily Item
MIDDLEBURG — It took nearly three days for a jury to be selected to hear testimony in the coming trial of three Snyder County men accused of killing Donald E. Seebold III nearly 16 years ago.
Jury selection began Monday morning and ended Wednesday afternoon with the selection of eight women and four men for the panel, plus two men and two women as alternates.
The panel was chosen from a pool of about 200 prospective jurors summoned to the Middleburg courthouse.
They will begin hearing testimony on April 29 in the criminal homicide and conspiracy case against Robert L. Reich, 37, and Christopher J. Aucker, 39, both of Beavertown, and Ryan C. Sprenkel, 37, of Middleburg.
The trial is scheduled to last two weeks, and all three defendants, represented by different attorneys, will be tried together.
Sprenkel, Aucker and Reich also are charged with perjury for allegedly lying to the statewide grand jury convened in 2011 to hear District Attorney Michael Piecuch’s evidence in Seebold’s beating death on July 13, 1997.
They were arrested in March 2012 after the grand jury recommended charges be filed against them. Though the arrests took place nearly 15 years after Seebold’s death, there is no statute of limitations in homicide cases.
The men are accused of fatally beating and kicking Seebold, 22, for flirting with Aucker’s then-girlfriend, now his wife, Sheila Liddington Aucker, at Reich’s all-day birthday party, held at the Port Ann home of his aunt, Linda Thomas.
Liddington Aucker and Thomas are charged with perjury for allegedly lying to the grand jury about the events surrounding Seebold’s death.