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Jury selected in Pinellas hiccup girl murder trial

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Mee in court on Aug. 2 Mee in court on Aug. 2
HERNANDO COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -

A six year old case of the hiccups played an important role in jury selection for a Pinellas County murder trial. A jury was seated late Tuesday in the Jennifer Mee case.

Jennifer Mee, the woman known as 'hiccup girl' during her teenage years is on trial for murder.

They started with  70 prospective jurors in the pool.  But after Judge Nancy Moate Ley asked the group whether they had heard of the 'hiccup girl', about 30 raised their hands.

"When I said Hiccup Girl, you raised your hand, what do you remember?", asked Judge Moate Ley. "I didn't study the case, but I remember she couldn't stop hiccupping. It happened years ago," said a juror.

Twelve jurors and four alternates will be seated before opening statements Wednesday.

The judge believes the trial will last through Friday.

Mee appeared on several local and national TV shows in 2007 to talk about her relentless rounds of hiccups. She said they lasted for weeks at a time and turned her into a hermit.

"I can't do what a normal teenager would do. I can't go to the movies like I would like to do every Friday," Mee said on the TODAY Show.

Investigators said several years later, Mee met Shannon Griffin, 22, on the Internet and set him up to be robbed. Griffin's cousin said he showed up to meet Mee because he thought they were going on a date.

Related story: 09/13/2013 Pinellas 'hiccup girl' can talk to media before trial

"Next thing I know he's smiling, he's going to meet a girl. Next thing we hear at 4 in the morning saying that Shannon Griffin has been shot dead," explained Griffin's cousin Doug Bolden.

Police say Mee's roommates Laron Raiford and Lamont Newton robbed, then shot Griffin.  Investigators accuse Mee of setting up the robbery.

Related story: 08/27/2013 Trial starts for Pinellas 'hiccup girl' co-defendant

Under Florida law, if a person is killed during a robbery, everyone involved can be charged with murder.  A jury convicted Raiford of murder at his trial last month.  Newton is still waiting for his day in court.

If Mee is convicted during her trial this month, she faces life in prison with no possibility of parole.

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