By Jennifer McRae

PUEBLO, Colo. (CBS4) – Nearly eight years since Kelsie Schelling disappeared, opening statements will begin Wednesday in her murder trial. Donthe Lucas has been charged with her murder even though her body has never been found. Lucas pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in August 2018.

Kelsie Schelling (credit: CBS)

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When she disappeared in February 2013, Schelling was pregnant and was reportedly travelling from Denver to Pueblo to talk to Lucas about it.

Messages on Schelling’s phone showed she texted Lucas that she was pregnant, and his replies indicated he was unhappy.

On the day she reportedly disappeared, GPS on her phone showed it traveled to the same location in Pueblo as Lucas’ phone.

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Police believe Lucas was the last person to see Schelling and investigators have said he took $400 out of her account on that day.

Donthe Lucas

Donthe Lucas (credit: Pueblo Police Dept.)

Police found Schelling’s car in a Walmart parking lot in Pueblo a few days after she was reported missing.

In December 2020, Schelling’s mother spoke to KKTV, our news partners in Colorado Springs.

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“I’ve been through so many different types of hell the last almost eight years and I know that this [trial] is going to be just a different type on a different level,” Laura Saxton said. “You know it’s something that has to be done and needs to be taken care of so no matter how hard or difficult it is we just have to push through it.”

Jennifer McRae