Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

October 11, 2012

Techel trial delayed

Defense will submit desired trial date to court

MARK NEWMAN
Courier Staff Writer

OTTUMWA — The man accused of murdering his pregnant wife will not go on trial this November.

Authorities allege that Seth Techel shot and killed his wife Lisa Techel in late May at their rural Agency home.

Seth Techel is facing a first-degree murder charge as well as a charge of non-consensual termination of a human pregnancy, considered in Iowa to be a felony assault.

Seth Techel has waived his right to a speedy trial.

Back in July, the trial had been scheduled to take place on Nov. 6. According to court documents made public this week, that trial “is canceled.”

However, Techel’s defense attorney Steve Gardner is required to present an order for specific dates to the court. He has until noon Oct. 22 to get that filed.

The requirement is that he schedules an acceptable date for “trial and other necessary dates,” which includes meetings like the pre-trial conference.

Lisa Techel was a reserve deputy sheriff with Wapello County and had served as a correctional officer in Washington County.

Seth Techel was arrested a few days after her death. Investigators from the Wapello County Sheriff’s Office and Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation say Lisa Techel was shot once with a shotgun. Authorities say they have possession of the weapon used in the shooting.

First-degree murder is a Class A felony and carries a life sentence in prison. Nonconsensual termination of a human pregnancy, a Class B felony, carries a sentence of up to 25 years.

Techel is currently being held on $750,000 cash-only bail.