The Ottumwa Courier

Southeast Iowa

November 4, 2013

Caldwell: 'I couldn't have been more proud'

MT. PLEASANT — Todd Caldwell, Lisa Techel's father, took the stand at Seth Techel's murder trial Monday to tell jurors about his daughter.

Caldwell, who worked in the Wapello County Sheriff's Department, said he was close to his daughter. They were in daily contact, with calls and text messages. They would occasionally grab lunch together, since Lisa was a reserve deputy.

“I couldn't have been more proud. I couldn't have had a better friend,” he said.

Caldwell teared up briefly while talking about Lisa, but his voice steadied as he was questioned about how he came to know Techel. He frequently looked right at Techel, who sat nearby at the defense table, as he answered.

The morning of the murder it was a dispatcher who sent Caldwell to the trailer.

“A dispatcher called me at home and woke me up. The dispatcher told me I had to get out to Lisa's house, that she had been shot and wasn't breathing,” he said.

Caldwell's instructions at the scene to deputies to “Get him,” were a reference to Brian Tate, he said. The defense has suggested Tate, who lived adjacent to the Techels, is a better suspect in the murder than Techel.

Tate had accused Seth of vandalism. Caldwell interviewed him as part of the investigation. Tate showed Caldwell rocks he said were thrown at his property and a can of dog feces he had collected. Both, he claimed, came were the result of harassment by Techel.

Caldwell didn't believe the accusations.

“What he was saying and what my son-in-law was saying were different. I tended to believe my son-in-law,” he said.

The accusations were true, though. Earlier Monday, Michael Owings told jurors Techel enlisted him to harass Brian Tate. Defense attorney Steven Gardner characterized Owing's actions a “prank.”

Text Only
Southeast Iowa
  • Seusical 261.JPG Summer Fun for Families: Seussical the Musical

    Need a Dr. Seuss fix? Or just to get out of the house with a younger child for a few hours? Pella will be staging "Seussical the Musical."

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Darth Vader is polling higher than all potential 2016 presidential candidates

    On the other hand, with a net favorability of -8, Jar Jar is considerably more popular than the U.S. Congress, which currently enjoys a net favorability rating of -65.

    July 25, 2014

  • Taking a look at Iowa's rural bridges and roads

    OSKALOOSA — National statistics indicate that Iowa roads and bridges are in desperate need of repair.According to the Rural Connections: Challenges and Opportunities in America’s Heartland report, 22 percent of Iowa’s rural bridges are deficient.Maha

    July 25, 2014

  • 0726 OTT cedar creek Gone in a flash

    BLOOMFIELD — Bob Parker got about as close to lightning as you can Friday morning, and came out of it without injury. A line of thunderstorms started moving through southeast Iowa in the early morning hours. Parker was heading to work at about 7 a.m.

    July 25, 2014 2 Photos

  • Southeast Iowa's Lake Darling State Park reopens BRIGHTON, Iowa (AP) — Lake Darling State Park has reopened after around six years of restoration work in southeast Iowa's Washington County. The $16 million project began in 2008 and included draining the 300-acre lake and replacing a dam. The park n

    July 25, 2014

  • Honey Creek Resort recognized for recycling MORAVIA — Honey Creek Resort State Park on Rathbun Lake has been selected as having the best government recycling program by the Iowa Recycling Association.“Iowa’s Greenest Resort” received the award July 17 during the Iowa Recycling Association annu

    July 24, 2014

  • Mammoth photo 2 Researchers find mammoth ankle

    OSKALOOSA — Researchers at the mammoth dig site in rural Mahaska County recently found an articulated mammoth ankle — a very interesting find.“It tells us something we never knew before,” said Dave Brenzel of the Indian Creek Nature Center. The mammo

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • Van Buren says bye-bye to Waste Management KEOSAUQUA — Waste Management has been charging the Van Buren Community School District an average of nearly $1,600 a month to remove waste and recycled materials from the Douds and Keosauqua centers. Now faced with a bidding process, Waste Management

    July 23, 2014

  • MINE logo.jpg Two arrested on drug charges

    The Mid-Iowa Narcotics Enforcement drug task force executed a search warrant in Knoxville last night. A man and a woman were arrested. 

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Propane suppliers: buy ahead to avoid price spikes DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — State officials and propane suppliers are advising consumers to fill their tanks before cold weather arrives because prices could climb again this winter. The Dubuque Telegraph Herald reports (http://bit.ly/1obSe2U ) prices will

    July 23, 2014

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National