- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 2, 2015

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) - Nearly 200 witnesses could be called to testify at the trial of a man charged in a deadly 2012 Indianapolis house explosion.

Jury selection begins Thursday in the trial of Mark Leonard. He is one of five people charged in the November 2012 blast that killed two people and damaged or destroyed more than 80 homes.

Opening statements in Leonard’s trial are scheduled for Monday in South Bend. WISH-TV reports (https://bit.ly/1I6cqM9 ) prosecutors expect to present more than 3,000 pieces of evidence.

Prosecutors say the November 2012 explosion was a scheme to collect $300,000 in insurance. It occurred when the home of Leonard’s then-girlfriend, Monserrate Shirley, filled up with gas after a fireplace valve and a gas line regulator were removed.

The blast killed a couple who lived next door.

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This story has been corrected to reflect opening statements, not opening arguments, will begin Monday.

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Information from: WISH-TV, https://www.wishtv.com/


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