A Florida woman who appeared on several national television programs as a teen because of her uncontrollable hiccupping went on trial on a murder charge today. Prosecutors and attorneys for Jennifer Mee began selecting a jury in a Pinellas County courtroom; the trial is expected to wrap up by the end of the week. The 22-year-old Mee is charged with first-degree murder in the 2010 death of Shannon Griffin, who prosecutors say Mee lured to a St. Petersburg home under the pretense of buying marijuana—but instead two of Mee's friends robbed him at gunpoint. Griffin struggled with the suspects and was shot several times.
Detectives said Mee accepted a friend request from Griffin on a social networking website five or six days before the robbery; at issue is whether Mee is a bystander or the person who planned the robbery. Prosecutors allege the latter, and under Florida law, a person can be convicted of murder if he or she committed a serious felony crime, such as robbery, and someone was killed as a result. Mee's attorney said his client suffered from Tourette's Syndrome, and that the hiccups were one symptom of Tourette's. If convicted, she will face life in prison without the possibility of parole. (Shortly after her arrest, her mom explained what she thought was to blame.)