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Former Georgia police officer charged with teen girl's murder rejects plea deal

A former Georgia police officer charged with the murder of a 16-year-old girl rejected the prosecution's plea deal before jury selection began Monday.

A former Georgia police officer charged with murder in the death of 16-year-old Susana Morales rejected the prosecution's plea deal before jury selection began Monday.

Miles Bryant, 23, told the court he was ready to go to trial on murder charges in connection with the girl's death. He is accused of kidnapping and killing her as she was walking home from a friend's house before dumping her naked body in the woods in July 2022.

Bryant, who was fired from the Doraville Police Department over allegations in this case, lives close to where Morales was last reported on Windscape Village Lane in Norcross, Georgia, officials said in the warrant application, according to Fox 5 Atlanta.

He has been charged in Gwinnett County with concealing the death of another, murder and kidnapping in connection with Morales' death. He was also charged with filing a false report of a crime over allegations he falsely reported his gun was stolen.

FORMER GEORGIA COP CHARGED WITH KILLING 16-YEAR-OLD MISSING GIRL HAS BEEN CHARGED IN 2019 BURGLARY

Police said Bryant falsely reported that his gun had been stolen from his personal vehicle he left unlocked, on the same day Morales was reported missing. But his gun was later found in the same wooded area on Drowning Creek Road where Morales' body was discovered.

Morales was first reported missing by her family in late July 2022 after she failed to return home one night.

In February 2023, police responded to the area between Drowning Creek and Barrow County after someone reported noticing what they suspected were human remains in the woods. The Gwinnett Medical Examiners' office tested the remains and concluded that the DNA matched Morales' dental records.

One potential juror admitted during jury selection on Monday that serving on the jury in this case would be difficult, Fox 5 Atlanta reported.

FORMER GEORGIA COP CHARGED IN MISSING TEEN'S MURDER FILED FALSE POLICE REPORT

"It's not like we are talking about a car accident or somebody steal[ing] a watch from a store," the potential juror said. "It has long-lasting consequences, and it's a scary place to be, in one of those chairs."

If convicted, Bryant faces life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Bryant's attorneys asked the judge to declare a mistrial after one potential juror said during questioning in open court that she had heard weird things about the defendant, which his attorneys argued prejudiced potential jurors.

The prosecution told the judge, however, that the woman's statement would not negatively influence the jury pool.

FORMER GEORGIA COP CHARGED WITH KILLING MISSING GIRL INDICTED FOR MALICE MURDER

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The judge ultimately dismissed all 14 jurors who were in court during the woman's testimony.

The trial continues on Tuesday.

Bryant is also facing charges of first-degree burglary in Snellville over accusations that he stalked and broke into the home of one of his former classmates.

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