Jury selection to continue in murder trial after 'medical emergency'

Drayton and Lukaitis
Drayton and Lukaitis

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Jury selection is scheduled to continue today for the trial of a man accused of killing a Bluffton mother, after a juror suffered medical complications to halt proceedings Monday.

The Charleston County Clerk of Court's Office said a medical emergency delayed the case yesterday.

Registered sex offender Darold Drayton is charged with the murder of 27-year-old Alexis Lukaitis, whose body was found dumped on Old Jacksonboro Road in Adams Run in August 2010.

Investigators said Lukaitis, who was found stabbed several times, went with Drayton from Bluffton to Charleston to buy prescription drugs.

Deputies believe Drayton killed her on the way and dumped her body on the road.  Lukaitis had been reported missing Monday by her fiance, Michael Bartley, 32, after he became concerned that she never returned home from an expectedly short trip to Charleston.

Drayton told Beaufort County authorities he was a friend and former neighbor of Lukaitis when he was arrested. Deputies found cuts and scratches on Drayton's chest, arms and hands.

According to the affidavit, Drayton's cousin found a spare tire and other items covered in blood in his back yard in Bluffton after Drayton showed up early Monday morning, about the same time Lukaitis' body was found.

Drayton was convicted in 2005 of committing a lewd act on a child and ended his probation in 2008. According to the State Law Enforcement Divisions Sex Offender Registry website, Drayton has 10 aliases.

Drayton's rap sheet is extensive with convictions for forgery, drug possession and manufacturing drugs, assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, and a few armed robberies.

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