An out-of-town jury will hear the murder trial of a central Missouri teenager accused of slaying a 9-year-old neighbor girl because she wanted to know what it felt like to kill someone.
A judge decided Tuesday to select a jury from outside of Cole County as an alternative to a request by Alyssa Bustamante's attorneys to move the trial elsewhere.
Bustamante, who was 15 at the time of the crime, is charged as an adult with first-degree murder and armed criminal action in the Oct. 21 slaying of Elizabeth Olten. She has pleaded not guilty.
Authorities say Bustamante plotted Elizabeth's death — digging two holes several days in advance — then strangled her without provocation, cut the girl's throat and stabbed her. They say Bustamante confessed in a police interview to slaying Elizabeth because she wanted to know what it felt like to kill someone.
Hundreds of volunteers helped during a two-day search for the missing fourth-grader. Authorities say Bustamante ultimately led them to Elizabeth's body, which was concealed in a wooded area near the girls' homes just west of Jefferson City.