The Preliminary Hearing for 1st Degree Murder Charges against Donthe Lucas in the murder and disappearance of Kelsie Schelling starts 1 week from today in Pueblo. I wanted to shed some light on the purpose of the Preliminary Hearing (PH)as I think the whole process is complicated and hard to understand and we want to share with you and have your involvement as much as possible. After all, many of you have been on this long road with us for over 5 years now.
The PH is best described as a "trial before the trial" and takes place after a criminal complaint has been filed by a prosecutor, to determine whether there is enough evidence to require a trial. It is the first hearing where witnesses may testify.
There is no guilty, or not guilty, ruling by the Judge at the PH, but rather the ruling that there is enough evidence to force the defendant to stand trial.
The judge has issued sequestration orders and no cameras will be allowed in the courtroom, but we will do our best to share what we can without violating any court orders.
Stress, fear and anxiety are running very high, so your continued prayers and support are so helpful to us. As always, our ultimate goal is to receive the information we need to bring Kelsie and baby K home.