Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

Community News Network

March 8, 2013

Neighbor denies involvement in murder

OTTUMWA — Seth Techel's trial on charges of murder and non-consensual termination of a human pregnancy resumed Friday after jurors were given a one-day break in the proceedings.

On Thursday, Judge Daniel Wilson ruled much of what the defense had hoped to introduce to jurors about the health, both physical and mental, of Techel's neighbor inadmissible. The defense has pointed to the neighbor, Brian Tate, as a suspect investigators overlooked in a rush to charge Techel.

Prosecutors had argued the information about Tate would take significant time without saying anything about the Techel's guilt or innocence.

Jurors did hear from Tate through audio of a May 30, 2012 interview Deputy Don Phillips conducted with him. During the interview Tate was directly asked whether he had anything to do with Lisa Techel's death. He said no.

Tate believed the Wapello County Sheriff's Department had not fully followed up on his complaints about vandalism of his property. He had accused Techel of being behind the incidents, a fact confirmed by witnesses earlier in the trial.

"It didn't seem to me like you were investigating much ... I felt like you guys would have been more present in this area," Tate said.

Phillips asked Tate how he kept guard on his property. He said he walked some, but mostly watched to make sure no one was causing trouble. When asked whether he knew if the Techels owned guns, Tate wasn't sure but said he had heard shooting from the property.

The interview also included questions about Tate's own firearms. He said he did have guns, including two shotguns and slugs. The guns were "for defensive purposes only."

"I don't trust people anymore," he explained.

Late in the interview Phillips asked Tate directly, "Did you have anything to do with Lisa's death?"

"No, I did not," Tate replied.

Prosecutor Scott Brown asked about the shotgun shells Tate showed Phillips. They appeared to be old, Phillips said, with faded markings. But they were the same brand and color as those recovered with what authorities believe was the murder weapon.

Defense attorney Steven Gardner focused on Phillips' interactions with Tate. During the interview, Tate invited Phillips to call neighbors to ask whether he had ever been a problem. But the previous day, Gardner said, Phillips had received a call from one neighbor saying Tate had called to talk to him about their relationship.

When asked about Tate's comment that he was ready if "someone started shooting" at him or his house, Phillips conceded Tate seemed paranoid.

The defense indicated Thursday it will call three more witnesses. It is not clear whether that includes Techel himself. Prosecutors have not said how many rebuttal witnesses it plans to call, if any.

Jurors could hear closing arguments and get the case as soon as Monday.

1
Text Only
Community News Network
  • 072214 Diamond Llama 1.jpg Llama on the loose corralled in Missouri town

    A llama on the lam cruised Main Street Tuesday before it mistook a resident’s fenced backyard for a place to grab a meal and freshen up.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • An oncologist uses scorpion venom to locate cancer cells

    Olson, a pediatric oncologist and research scientist in Seattle, has developed a compound he calls Tumor Paint. When injected into a cancer patient, it seems to light up all the malignant cells so surgeons can easily locate and excise them.

    July 22, 2014

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-22 at 2.00.42 PM.png VIDEO: Train collides with semi truck carrying lighter fluid

    A truck driver from Washington is fortunate to be alive after driving his semi onto a set of tracks near Somerset, Ky., and being struck by a locomotive, which ignited his load of charcoal lighter fluid.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • mama.jpg What we get wrong about millennials living at home

    If the media is to be believed, America is facing a major crisis. "Kids," some age 25, 26, or even 30 years old, are living out of their childhood bedrooms and basements at alarmingly high numbers. The hand-wringing overlooks one problem: It's all overblown.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wal-Mart to cut prices more aggressively in back-to-school push

    Wal-Mart Stores plans to cut prices more aggressively during this year's back-to-school season and will add inventory to its online store as the chain battles retailers for student spending.

    July 21, 2014

  • Hospitals let patients schedule ER visits

    Three times within a week, 34-year-old Michael Granillo went to the emergency room at Northridge Hospital Medical Center in Los Angeles because of intense back pain. Each time, Granillo, who didn't have insurance, stayed for less than an hour before leaving without being seen by a doctor.

    July 21, 2014

  • Starved Pennsylvania 7-year-old weighed only 25 pounds

    A 7-year-old Pennsylvania boy authorities described as being so underweight he looked like a human skeleton has been released from the hospital.

    July 21, 2014

  • Malaysians wonder 'Why us?' after second loss of airline jet

    It was all too familiar. Grieving families rushing to airport. The flashing television graphics of a plane's last radar appearance. The uncomfortable officials before a heavy thicket of microphones.
    For many Malaysians, the disappearance of Flight 370 in March has been a long trauma from which the nation has not yet recovered.

    July 18, 2014

  • A quarter of the world's most educated people live in the 100 largest cities

    College graduates are increasingly sorting themselves into high-cost, high-amenity cities such as Washington, New York, Boston and San Francisco, a phenomenon that threatens to segregate us across the country by education.

    July 18, 2014

  • Your chocolate addiction is only going to get more expensive

    For nearly two years, cocoa prices have been on the rise. Finally, that's affecting the price you pay for a bar of chocolate - and there's reason to believe it's only the beginning.

    July 18, 2014

  • Facebook tests button to let people shop from its website

    Members on desktop computers or mobile devices can click a "buy" button to make purchases through advertisements or other posts on the world's largest social network, the Menlo Park, California-based company said Thursday in a blog post.

    July 17, 2014

  • The terrible history of passenger planes getting shot out of the sky

    What is more clear is that, if initial reports are true, this would be the deadliest incident of a civilian passenger plane being shot down in modern memory. In some instances, the causes of the disaster are still shrouded in mystery. Here are some of the worst events.

    July 17, 2014

  • 130408_NT_BEA_good kids We're raising a generation of timid kids

    A week ago, a woman was charged with leaving her child in the car while she went into a store. Her 11-year-old child. This week, a woman was arrested for allowing her 9-year-old daughter to go to the park alone. Which raises just one question: America, what the heck is wrong with you?

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • web_starbucks-cof_big_ce.jpg Starbucks sees more Apple-like stores after Colombia debut

    This week Starbucks opened its first location in Colombia — a 2,700-square-foot store with a heated patio, concrete columns, mirrors on the ceiling and walls of colorful plants.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • VIDEO: New story emerges about Texas children locked in hot car

    After footage showed Texas shoppers breaking the windows of a hot car to rescue children trapped inside, additional witnesses have come forward to correct the story behind what has become a viral video.

    July 16, 2014

Obituaries
Featured Ads
Poll

The Iowegian wants readers to think about the 2014 Appanoose County Fair. It starts Monday and wraps up on Saturday with a demolition derby at 8 p.m. So, the question of the week is, "How many days do you plan to go to the Appanoose County Fair?

A. I plan to attend all six days.
B. I plan to attend five days.
C. I plan to attend four days.
D. I plan to attend three days.
E. I plan to attend two days.
F. I plan to attend one day.
G. I do not plan to go to the fair this year.
     View Results
Iowegian on Facebook