TECHEL MISTRIAL: Jury Fails To Reach Verdict

A Wapello County judge has declared a mistrial in the murder trial of Seth Techel.

He was charged with first degree murder and non-consensual termination of a pregnancy in the death of his wife Lisa Caldwell Techel.

The judge announced the decision shortly after 11:00 a.m. Friday, saying the jury was unable to reach a verdict.

The state says it plans to re-try Techel but has not set a trial date yet.

Some on the jury left the courtroom in tears while Lisa Caldwell Techel’s family sat silently wiping away their own.

“Of course we’re disappointed in what happened, but I think the entire family is confident and moving forward that justice will be served,” Todd Caldwell said. “We talk about stories of Lisa and that always makes everything better.”

Techel has been returned to custody in the Monroe County Jail.

Lisa Techel was shot to death at the couple’s rural Agency home in May. Seth Techel claimed he was in the shower when he heard a gunshot and found Lisa on the bed.

Prosecutors say Techel was having an affair with co-worker Rachel McFarland and he killed his wife in order to continue that affair.

The defense tried to place doubt in the minds of jurors by blaming Lisa’s death on a “problem” neighbor, Brian Tate. Tate was a paranoid schizophrenic, who has since died.  Authorities interviewed him following the murder and they played parts of the interview in court.

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