Jury selection began Monday in a Lee County capital murder trial stemming from a 2009 convenience store robbery and double shooting in Jonesboro.

mcqueen-360x450Brian McQueen faces the death penalty if found guilty of the August 2009 murder of Amad Ahmad Asmar, 48. Asmar was at the time owner of the Jackpot convenience store on Lee Avenue. McQueen is also charged with shooting and injuring Ali Ahmad Mustafa during the robbery.

McQueen was 19 at the time of his arrest. Sanford attorney Fred Webb represented McQueen initially, but Webb withdrew from the case because of a conflict. Attorneys Tony Buzzard and Tim Morris of Harnett County were appointed after Webb withdrew. Assistant District Attorneys Mike Beam and Matt Craven will prosecute the case with Sanford Police Detective Keith Rogers as the lead investigator. Judge Winston Gilchrist will preside.

A recent Sanford Herald story identified McQueen as the Lee County Jail’s longest-serving murder suspect who had yet to be tried. Courthouse sources reported the family of the victims had flown from overseas to be present for the trial. McQueen is charged with first-degree murder, assault with a deadly weapon, and armed robbery.

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