Jury selected in trial for stepfather of Omaree Varela

stephen-casaus
Stephen Casaus

ALBUQUERQUE (AP) – The jury has been selected for the trial of an Albuquerque man charged in connection with a deadly child abuse case.

After two days of selection, twelve jurors have been chosen for the trial; nine of them are men and three of them are women.

Three alternates have been selected as well.

Stephen Casaus faces charges including intentional child abuse resulting in death and tampering with evidence in the December 2013 death of 9-year-old Omaree Varela.

Authorities say the boy was kicked to death by his mother. Police and officials with New Mexico’s Child, Youth and Families Department had received reports of possible abuse at the child’s home before his death.

The case exposed communication gaps in the handling of child welfare investigations in the state.

The boy’s mother will stand trial separately.

The trial and opening statements are scheduled for 8:30 Wednesday morning. KRQE News 13 will be live streaming the trial.

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