Lehigh Valley

Trial delayed for couple accused in Grace Packer murder case

DOYLESTOWN, Pa. - The trial for the couple charged with sexually assaulting and killing 14-year-old Grace Packer has been delayed again.

Jury selection was scheduled to begin in September, but court documents show the trial has been pushed back to January 14, 2019.

Sara Packer and Jacob Sullivan are due back in court on Sept. 17 for a pre-trial hearing.

The pair faces a litany of charges in the death of Packer's 14-year-old adopted daughter, Grace.

Sara Packer was a former supervisor at Northampton County's Children and Youth Family Division.

Prosecutors say back in 2016 she and Sullivan carried out a plan to rape Grace at a home in Richland Township, Bucks County, then left her in an attic to die.

The next day, Sullivan allegedly strangled Grace after finding her still alive. Sara Packer reported Grace missing later that month.

The girl's dismembered body was found in October of that year in Luzerne County.

During a pre-trial hearing in January,  several nurses from Abington Memorial Hospital who treated Sullivan after a failed suicide attempt testified that Sullivan admitted to killing Grace. They said he told them, "I don't know why they are being so hard on Sarah, I did it."

He added that they killed Grace because they couldn't handle her, needed the money and couldn't take her back.

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