Julie Schenecker in Tampa court as jury selection begins - WFLA News Channel 8

Julie Schenecker in Tampa court as jury selection begins

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Julie Schenecker in court Julie Schenecker in court
The murdered children's father, Army Col. Parker Schenecker, was in court Monday. The murdered children's father, Army Col. Parker Schenecker, was in court Monday.
TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

Suburban military mom Julie Schenecker, who is accused of killing her two teenage children, was in a Hillsborough County courtroom Monday morning for the jury selection phase of her murder trial. Her ex-husband Army Col. Parker Schenecker was also in court.

Police claim 53-year-old Julie Schenecker admitted to shooting her teenaged children, Calyx and Beau, because they were "mouthy."

A number of potential jurors told the court they are familiar with the case. Several people in the jury pool told the court they have already made up their minds on the case, based on reports they’ve seen in the media.

The judge informed the jury pool that the murder trial may last up to three weeks. Several people told the judge that would create a hardship they cannot deal with.

Officers found the teens' bodies in the family's Tampa Palms home on January 28, 2011. The children's father was stationed overseas at the time.

Police had gone to the family's home on a "welfare check" call. Julie Schenecker's mother had called police after receiving a disturbing email from her daughter that made it appear she would be committing suicide.

Two officers went to the home and found Julie on the floor of her patio at the rear of the home. The officers say she was unresponsive, but after they awakened her, she told them she had been drinking, that she is bi-polar and was on medication.

Officers went inside the home and found 16-year-old Calyx Schenecker dead in her bed with two gunshot wounds to the head.

13-year-old Beau Schenecker was found dead in the garage, also the victim of a gunshot wound. Officers found a handgun and several spent shell casings inside the home.

Officers at the scene noted that Julie Schenecker could barely stand up and her speech was slurred.

Police took her downtown for questioning. During the integration Julie told officers she had to leave because she had to pick up her children.

Julie Schenecker with the first degree murder for the death of children.

The state attorney eventually took the death penalty out as a possible sentence. The defense is expected to argue that she is not guilty by reason of insanity, but multiple legal experts say this will be a difficult defense to win. Florida juries have a long history of denying the insanity defense in a number of cases.

Julie Schenecker once worked as a U.S. Army intelligence officer. Her specialty was her ability to speak Russian and interrogate refuges.

During her career in the Army she met and then married Army Colonel Parker Schenecker and had two children.

Eventually she became a suburban mom. Parker continued to serve his country and was deployed overseas.

Jury selection is scheduled to resume at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.


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