Woodward County is on track to soon see its first criminal jury trial in almost 8 years.

The first degree murder trial against Richard Wayne Conway, who has been accused of fatally shooting Cheryl Roberts in November 2009, is set to begin on Tuesday with jury selection in the Woodward County Courthouse.

County Court Clerk Jenny Hopkins said she sent out notices to a pool of 200 people.

However, she said several of the notices have been sent back as return mail and several people have already been released from serving for one reason or another.

District Attorney Hollis Thorp was actually going over the jury list Thursday afternoon when The News asked him about the progress of Conway's case and the likelihood that it would go to trial.

In response, Thorp said that Assistant District Attorney Danny Lohmann "is in Fairview now issuing more subpoenas."

"And the defense attorney is filing motions," he said, noting "so I think it will go on."

If the trial stays on track, Hopkins said it would be the first criminal jury trial held in Woodward since 2003.

"We schedule trials all the time, but usually it's for civil cases," she said.

Even if a trial is scheduled, the court clerk said often an agreement is made in the case at the last minute "or it gets continued."

In fact, Hopkins said it's been around 8 months since there has been any jury trial held in the county.  The most recent record she could find was for a juvenile case to terminate parental rights that was held in May 2010.

The last time a jury was called to hear a criminal case was in February 2003, Hopkins said.

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