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Jury: Wis. Dad Responsible in Killing 3 Daughters

Posted at: 04/16/2013 6:17 PM
By: AMY FORLITI, Associated Press

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HUDSON, Wis. (AP) - Jurors in western Wisconsin say a father had a mental defect but is still responsible for killing his three young daughters last July.

Aaron Schaffhausen pleaded guilty last month to three counts of first-degree intentional homicide in the deaths of 11-year-old Amara, 8-year-old Sophie and 5-year-old Cecilia. But he argued he was not responsible because of a mental illness.

Jurors deliberated for about 3½ hours before reaching their verdict.

During closing arguments Tuesday, prosecutor Gary Freyberg said Schaffhausen was in control of his actions and was a mean, callous person - but not legally insane.

Defense attorney John Kucinski argued Schaffhausen has a rare mental disorder, rooted in a deep dependency on his ex-wife.

The jury found he had the capacity to know what he did was wrong.

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