Techelâ??s alleged love interest takes the stand in day two of trial
The state continued presenting its case against Seth Techel Wednesday morning in a Davenport Court room as prosecutors called their star witness, Rachel McFarland.
Prosecutors say Techel's relationship with McFarland provides the motive for Lisa Techel's murder.
For the third time in less than two years, McFarland took the stand to recount her relationship with her Ottumwa Job Corps co-worker.
McFarland told the court that she and Techel slowly developed a romantic relationship.
That relationship went from innuendo loaded text messages to one that became somewhat physical. The relationship was never consummated, but McFarland testified that she thought she loved Techel, and she said that Techel became increasingly desperate to be with her.
At the same time she said she started to have doubts about the relationship.
She also recounted an ominous sounding conversation she had with Techel just weeks before Lisa's death. At the time she said that she was considering starting a relationship with another man.
Techel, however, pleaded for more time to make their relationship work.
"We were talking about Brandon I believe and he just said give me two more weeks and I asked what that meant and he just repeated it again he said give me two more weeks yeah,â?? said McFarland.
The defense tried mitigating the statement on cross, suggesting that Techel may have been talking about quitting his job at Ottumwa Job Corps.
Techelâ??s Attorney Roger Owens also tried to emphasize to jurors that the relationship while flirtatious, was never overtly sexual.
McFarlandâ??s former boyfriend Drew Ballard also took the stand as arguments continued Wednesday. Ballard told the panel that he ended a long time relationship with McFarland after discovering messages from Techel to McFarland.
Jurors were then presented with video from a squad car that responded to the Techel's home on the morning of the murder.
In that video, a seemingly distraught Techel can be seen and heard.
The video also shows Lisa Techel's father Todd Caldwell arriving on the scene. Caldwell's comments on tape suggest that he initially feared the former neighbor Brian Tate was responsible for the crime.
Testimony ended for the day with DCI Criminalist Mike Halverson taking jurors through the Techel home using crime scene photos.
Techel showed no obvious emotion when the photos of his dead wife were projected to the court.
Halverson will return to the stand when court resumes on Thursday.