A 12-person jury and two alternates were chosen Tuesday at the second-degree murder trial of a Greenwell Springs man accused of fatally shooting two Baker men inside a car in 2017.

Prosecutor Dana Cummings and Jarvis Antwine, who represents 29-year-old William Bottoms Jr., will give their opening statements Wednesday morning and then the state will begin calling its witnesses.

Bottoms faces a mandatory term of life in prison if found guilty as charged in the June 1, 2017, slaying of Dedrick Dewayne Williams, 23, and Mohamed Sead Hussain, 29.

Megan Marie Gaylord, who was Bottoms' girlfriend at the time, was once charged as an accessory in the case but prosecutors dismissed the charge last year. Gaylord, 29, of Greenwell Springs, is scheduled to testify at the trial.

The victims' bodies were discovered in the back seat of a car in the rural St. Helena Parish community of Grangeville. Each man had been shot in the head. Their bodies were covered by a sheet.

Gaylord told investigators she, Bottoms and the two men had used drugs, and that she was driving a car in which Bottoms and the men were riding when Bottoms — her front seat passenger — became paranoid and shot Williams and Hussain, who were sitting in the back seat.

The killings occurred on Plank Road between Baker and Zachary, she said.

After the men were shot, Gaylord drove to Bottoms’ residence, where he retrieved bleach to destroy fingerprints and evidence, an arrest report says. Bottoms also retrieved a bed sheet later used to cover the bodies, the report states.

The car, with the bodies inside, was then driven to St. Helena and left there.

Jurors assured Bottoms' attorney that they could look past Bottoms' numerous tattoos on his face and judge him based solely on the evidence presented in court.

Ad hoc Judge Bruce Bennett is presiding over the trial at the 19th Judicial District Courthouse.

Bottoms' twin brother, Lawrence Bottoms, who also had many tattoos on his face, was shot to death in April in Mississippi after he pulled a gun on Hancock County sheriff's deputies. The deputies were trying to serve a warrant on him out of East Baton Rouge Parish for being a felon in possession of a firearm, the Biloxi Sun Herald reported.

Email Joe Gyan Jr. at jgyan@theadvocate.com.