Trial to begin in Reno slaying, serial rape case |

Trial to begin in Reno slaying, serial rape case

James Biela sits and listens during jury selection at his trial for the 2008 murder of Brianna Denison on Monday, May 10, 2010 in Reno, Nev. Due to the media coverage of the case that gripped the entire city for nearly a year, lawyers on both sides believe it will take days, perhaps as long as a week, to come up with a dozen jurors and two alternates. The trial is expected to last three to four weeks. (AP Photo/
ASSOCIATED PRESS | Reno Gazette-Journal, Pool

RENO (AP) – Trial is set to begin in Reno for a man accused of kidnapping and killing one college coed and sexually assaulting two other women more than two years ago.

A jury of seven men, five women and two alternates is due to hear opening arguments Wednesday in the trial of accused serial rapist James Biela (BEE’-lah) in Washoe County District Court.

The 29-year-old Biela could face the death penalty if he is convicted of murdering 19-year-old Brianna Denison.

She was abducted in January 2008 from a house near the University of Nevada, Reno.

Her body was found more than three weeks later in a field beneath a discarded Christmas tree.

Prosecutors allege Biela was responsible for a series of sex attacks that had Reno on edge for nearly a year.