Jury selection begins in Chandler Halderson murder trial

MADISON, Wis. — Jury selection is underway in the trial of Chandler Halderson, the Dane County man accused of killing and dismembering his parents last summer.

The prospective juror pool includes more than 60 people across Dane County. Judge John Hyland dismissed a handful of jurors who had raised health concerns about being seated for the trial, which is expected to last at least three weeks. That included some jurors who reported having coughs over the last few days and a person who said they were unvaccinated from COVID-19 with underlying health conditions.

Per Dane County health orders, everyone in the courtroom will be masked unless they are speaking or on the witness stand.

Before having the prospective jurors swear in, Judge Hyland spoke on the responsibility they were about to take on if they were chosen.

“You do not have to serve in the military, we have a voluntary military even though there’s still registration for people turning 18. You don’t have to vote, there’s nothing that requires you to vote. You don’t have to pay taxes if you’re willing to face the consequences for that. But being here today and serving and being willing to serve, and to do so conscientiously and with a great, great sense of responsibility — not to me, but to each other — is vitally important to our system,” Judge Hyland said.

After dismissing those who had health concerns, Judge Hyland and attorneys representing the prosecution and defense moved into a separate room to question jurors individually. The jury selection process was expected to take most of Monday, with the trial beginning on Tuesday morning.

Chandler Halderson is accused of killing his parents, Bart and Krista, in early July before reporting them missing after the 4th of July weekend. Halderson told authorities his parents were picked up by an unknown couple and headed to their cabin in Langlade County for the holiday weekend, but authorities later found no one had visited the cabin and discovered other inconsistencies in his account of what happened.

Halderson was charged with lying to authorities about a missing person and with first-degree intentional homicide, mutilating a corpse and moving a corpse after dismembered human remains later determined to belong to Bart and Krista were found scattered across Dane County. Prosecutors allege witnesses place Halderson in the area where the remains were later found.

You can read additional coverage of the case and see a full timeline of events in the investigation here.

News 3 Now will have live continuing coverage of the trial here on Channel3000.com, Channel3000+ streaming apps and our Facebook and YouTube pages once it gets underway.