Long delayed Pennington murder trial begins

Published: Mar. 20, 2023 at 5:22 PM EDT
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TAZEWELL, Va. (WVVA) - A long awaited trial got underway in Tazewell today.

In 2017 Kaitlyn Toler was found dead in Bluefield, Virginia. That same year Michael Pennington Jr. was charged with her murder and concealment of he body. 6 years and 12 delays later Pennington’s trial begins.

The most recent delay was sue to alleged witness tampering.

On Monday we heard opening arguments. The state told the jury that they will hear from the medical examiner and how “she was discarded like an animal,”

The state claims Pennington strangled Toler with a ligature.

The defense says the state’s evidence is circumstantial and no murder weapon has been recovered. They claim there are untested items that could point away from Pennington.

Between the two sides there will be a large amount of evidence introduced- the court says the trial could take up to two weeks. Testimony begins Tuesday.