The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

November 14, 2013

No verdict in Techel trial after Thursday deliberations

MT. PLEASANT — The first full day of jury deliberations was completed Thursday at the Seth Techel first-degree murder trial, held at the Henry County Courthouse in Mt. Pleasant.

The 12-person jury spent the entire day Thursday discussing a verdict for Techel, who is accused of murdering his wife, Lisa Techel.

On Wednesday, both the prosecution and defense gave their final arguments, and Judge Daniel Wilson gave final instructions to the jury about how to deliberate. Then they met for close to half an hour before being sent home by the judge.

Thursday morning the jury, which is made up of six females and six males, picked up where they left off and selected a head juror. They were also given the pieces of evidence provided by both the prosecution and defense to use in their deliberations.

The jury has the job of deciding whether Techel is guilty or not. This is the second jury to hear the case after the first trial, held in Ottumwa, warranted a hung jury, which meant it was not a unanimous decision and forced a retrial.

Should the jury be split again, the state would have the choice of having a third trial or ending the case.

Jurors will meet again Friday morning to continue deliberations. If they do not reach a decision on Friday, it will be up to Wilson whether or not they will come back over the weekend or wait until Monday morning.

— To see reporter Josh Vardaman's Twitter feed, go to @CourierJosh

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