Dramatic Start to Wapiti Murder Trial
Written by wendycorr on August 6, 2019
Dramatic events in a Cody murder trial Monday. One juror was excused after a reported break down, and the defense claimed when a Wapiti man shot and killed his wife a year ago, it was an accident.
76 year old Dennis Klingbeil was charged with the murder of his 75 year old wife, Donna, at their Wapiti home in August 2018. Opening arguments were delayed in the trial Monday because one of the jurors was seen crying – she showed the bailiff a rash on her arm, and told him she didn’t think she could complete her obligations.
So, the jury pool was called back for another review…and more people were chosen to complete a 12 juror pan, with four alternates..
In opening arguments the prosecutor said Klingbeil and his wife had been arguing over trusts that would divide their 12 million dollar fortune between their children. He told them Klingbeil put a .38 caliber hand gun to his wife’s head, and shot her, then called his son and admitted what he had done.
But, Klingbeil’s defense attorney, told the jury her client was actually attempting to kill himself…and accidentally shot his wife as he lowered the gun from his own head.
From Cody, Penny Preston for the Big Horn Radio Network