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Inmate Says Wife's Murder Was "A Present"



Nathan Leuthold apparently told a fellow inmate at the Peoria County Jail he killed his wife on Valentine's Day, 2013.

The dramatic testimony of David Lee Smith came during the third day of Leuthold's murder trial in Peoria County Court. Leuthold is accused of shooting his wife to death in their Mossville Road home and staging a burlgary in an attempt to cover it up.

Smith is currently serving 14 years for drug charges and will have that sentenced reduced to 10 years in return for his testimony. Smith told Peoria County Assistant State's Attorney Jodi Hoos he and Leuthold would talk for several hours each day for a couple of weeks. Smith said he later took notes of those conversations and handed those notes over to detectives.

Smith said Leuthold told him he parked his wife's car at Robinson Park, then walked home and called his wife to come home.

"He said when his came in he had some words with her and he shot her in the head," Smith testified.

"He said (his wife) was overbearing and he had gotten to the point he wanted to move on with his life and met someone else."

Prosecutors aledge Leuthold was having an affair with a Lithuanian student and killed his wife to start a new life with her.

Smith said Luethold told him after he parked his wife's car before the shooting, "He back to his house and (sneaked) into his house, he radios his wife to come home. Then he changed clothes. He had black clothes, a hoodie and stuff, and put them in the closet because he thought some woman had seen him going back to the house."

"He just told me it was planned for that particular day (Valentine's Day)," said Smith. "It was supposed to be some type of present to this other chick."

"First he was thinking about some poison," Smith testified. "If he had to use a gun he need to get a silencer. So, he needed to do some research to find a silencer."

Smith said Leuthold even tried to establish some alibi's for himself that day.

"He visited like a car wash and a Starbuck's. Just hung out at these places so he could account for certain times during the day and some people could say he was at this place or that place."

Hoos asked Smith if, at any time, Leuthold showed remorse for what he had done. "I can't say he did," Smith said. "Everybody on the deck noticed that."

Aina Dobilaite, the Lithuanian student, is expected to testify later Tuesday. She will likely get immunity, meaning prosecutors will not be able to charge for anything, if she testifies.

Dobilaite requested she not be videotaped or recorded, but Peoria County Circuit Court Judge Kevin Lyons denied that request.

You can follow the trial on Twitter @1470 WMBD.

 

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