Update: Seven jurors were selected for the trial Wednesday. Jury selection continues Thursday afternoon. 

ITHACA, N.Y. — Jury selection has begun for a man the District Attorney’s Office say likely killed a Newfield man during a robbery in December.

Roy Clements is charged with second-degree murder, first-degree robbery, and fourth-degree conspiracy. He’s pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Police say that Clements and four other people conspired to steal Camden Rundell’s marijuana plants, which he kept in the basement of his Newfield home. During the robbery, accusatory documents state that Clements restrained Rundell on his lawn, about 100-feet from his door. Police say that while Rundell was being restrained, he died.

The incident was initially reported as a cardiac arrest, but police said from the get-go that the death was being investigated as “suspicious” and that police were interviewing people who may have been at the residence when Rundell died.

Police investigate the scene of a Newfield homicide in December. Photo by Kelsey O’Connor/ The Ithaca Voice
Police investigate the scene of a Newfield homicide in December. Photo by Kelsey O’Connor/ The Ithaca Voice

In total, five people were arrested and charged in connection with the crime: Jamie Gerhart, Colleen McColgin, Dennis Lampila, and Clements, were all charged with second-degree murder and first-degree robbery in the days following the homicide. Melissa Minnick was charged with fourth-degree conspiracy in connection to the crime and pleaded guilty in August. 

“We have reason to believe (Clements) was the individual who actually caused the death of Rundell,” Deputy District Attorney Andrew Bonavia said in court during a bail hearing in January.

The trial is scheduled to begin after jury selection.

Correction: Due to an editing error, the third paragraph of this story incorrectly indicated that Clements died while being restrained. It was Camden Rundell who died. 

Jolene Almendarez

Jolene Almendarez is Managing Editor at The Ithaca Voice. She can be reached at jalmendarez@ithacavoice.com; you can learn more about her at the links in the top right of this box.