Sparta, Wis. – (WXOW) – Day three of the Thomas Aspseter ax homicide trial saw the defendant take the stand.
Aspseter is facing 1st degree homicide charges in the death of 87-year-old Bernard Waite as well as attempted homicide charges against two other person he attacked.
Those two survivors were in the Monroe County courtroom when Aspseter was sworn in to give his testimony. First defense attorney Russ Hammer allowed Aspseter to tell his side of the story. According to Aspseter, he had an argumentative relationship with Waite. On the day of the incident when Waite discovered Aspseter in his home, the defendant claimed Waite first pushed him and then hit him once in the head.
On cross examination, District Attorney Kevin Croninger took Aspseter to task Aspseter’s version of events.
“So you chose to strike a 5’2″, 128 pound 87-year-old man in the head with an ax?” Croninger asked? “By your testimony today, after striking him once you decided to strike him again? What was the need for the second blow?”
“I honestly wasn’t aware of how dangerous an ax was,” Aspseter replied.
Later, Croninger asked if the intent of using the ax was to kill Waite.
“So when you swing the ax the first, the second time, your intent was to kill him?” Croninger said. “You felt your life was in danger from an 87-year-old man.”
“Absolutely,” was Aspseter’s response.
The case now goes to final arguments on Thursday morning before being turned over to the jury.
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