Just a few hours into jury selection in the murder trial of Timothy Claytor on Monday, Judge Tyler Gill issued a postponement due to Claytor’s health.
The trial is scheduled to reconvene Wednesday, May 28 at 9 a.m.
During the trial Monday, Claytor appeared to be shaky and pale, said his attorney Stewart Wheeler, prompting jury selection to stop. Claytor was later admitted to a Bowling Green hospital the next day for observation.
“I looked over and he (Claytor) was shaky and looking pretty chalky,” said Wheeler. Claytor was dismissed after the court took his blood pressure and found it to be higher than normal.
Claytor was arrested Friday, Aug. 31, 2012, after he allegedly shot and killed 46-year-old Dale Holloway of Russellville the night before. He was indicted on murder Friday, Sept. 7, 2012, which is a Class A felony, and if convicted, carries a sentence of 20 years to life in prison.
It has taken over a year to set the trial due to Claytor taking his case to a higher court hoping to be immune from prosecution due to his self-defence claims. However, the Kentucky Supreme Court ruled the appellate court did not have a responsibility to hear such cases before they went to trial.
The trial could last at least two weeks, said judge Gill.
During Monday’s proceedings to select a jury, both the prosecution and defense went over the possible jurors with a fine tooth comb. Many didn’t make the cut for one reason or another. Many questions were asked during jury selection, which included feelings prospective jurors had about the highly publicised George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin murder case where self-defense was used as a reason a young man was dead. Other questions asked included asking if prospective jurors had issue with people who had a drinking problem or those who carried on extra-marital relationships.
Commonwealth Attorney Gail Guiling told the prospective jurors they would see graphic photos of Holloway’s wounds during the trial and that there would also be a video presented showing Holloway getting shot.
“You’re going to see a man die, can you handle this?” asked Guiling of the prospective jurors.
Some technical difficulties may prove to cause problems as the trial proceeds. Problems were identified early with the overhead projector, however, a professional was scheduled to work on the issue.
Relatives of Holloway attended the jury selection Monday saying it was as if they were having to relive the moment over and over again.
“This feels like an old wound being opened again,” said Miranda Corbitt, a step-daughter of Dale Holloway. “We miss him very much. He was a great father and a great grandfather, he was a family man.”
Corbitt was upset her family was not allowed to wear T-shirts they had made up after the death of their loved one. The family was also not allowed to wear ribbons either, which held a picture of Holloway.
“We feel like we are being made to hide our love for our family,” said Corbitt. “We feel violated that we can’t express our love for him.”
The Logan County Sheriff’s Department was called out to Claytor’s home on T. McReynolds Road at approximately 10:22 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012, in response to a disturbance involving a weapon. Upon arrival, officers discovered Holloway unresponsive in the front yard with multiple gunshot wounds.
According to the sheriff’s office, it appears that Holloway came to the home of Claytor looking for Lori White, a female associate of Holloway. It appears, says police, that some type of argument took place between Holloway and Claytor that resulted in the death of Holloway.
Claytor’s attorney said he feels the jury selection is going “slow,” but holds firm to his client acting in self-defense.
“I’ve said all along this was self-defense,” said Wheeler. “And nothing will change my mind.”
Commonwealth’s Guiling will not comment saying she makes no statements during a trial.