Opening arguments in trial for man accused of beating, robbing 86-year-old

The jury trial for Jacob McDaniel is underway in Tippecanoe County. (WLFI Photo)
The jury trial for Jacob McDaniel is underway in Tippecanoe County. (WLFI Photo)

TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) — Day one is complete in a jury trial for the man accused of tying, beating up and robbing an elderly man at his Lafayette home in February.

Twenty-one-year-old Jacob McDaniel is charged with robbery, criminal confinement, battery, auto theft, possession and invasion of privacy in the case. He’s accused of beating, tying and robbing then-86-year-old Kenneth Nice at his home on the 900 block of Brick N’ Wood Drive in February.

The trial began at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday with jury selection and they heard opening arguments from both sides.

Jurors heard from several Lafayette police detectives and a neighbor of the victim, Kenneth Nice. The prosecution showed disturbing pictures of the scene and what Nice looked like hours and even days after the beating.

This wasn’t just tying him up and hitting him over the head, it was described as severe trauma. The prosecution showed the court disturbing pictures of the scene, including blood and bleach stains throughout the house. They also showed pictures of Nice the day of the beating, where he was so swollen and bloody you could hardly recognize him. His head, wrists and ankles were covered in several layers of duct tape and he had chemical burns and stains from bleach that was poured all over him.

Nice claims McDaniel did this to him, but has yet to testify that in court. He is expected to testify later this week.

The defense has not had much to say Tuesday. In court, McDaniel didn’t show much emotion. Instead, he just kept taking notes as witnesses described the scene and Nice’s brutal injuries.

Police said McDaniel stole Nice’s car, puppy, two TVs, jewelry box and a filing cabinet. Authorities found McDaniel hours after the incident with the car, dog and other evidence.

McDaniel has allegedly broken his no contact order with Nice since his arrest, and we will have more on that coming up Wednesday as News 18 continues to follow day two of the trial on air and online at