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Peoria murder trial focuses on Internet searches

Published: Saturday, July 19, 2014 11:11 p.m. CST

PEORIA – The Internet search history on a computer belonging to a former Baptist missionary accused of killing his wife included queries on various ways to kill someone, said an investigator testifying at the man's murder trial.

Nathan Leuthold is accused of shooting his 39-year-old wife, Denise, in their Peoria home on Valentine's Day in 2013. Prosecutors allege Leuthold wanted his wife dead so he could pursue an affair.

Leuthold has pleaded not guilty and says he found his wife's body after a break-in.

Leuthold's attorney countered Friday's testimony by saying that the computer was not protected by a password and anyone could have used it to make those searches.

The queries included how to kill a person by electrocution and injection as well as methods of suicide, according to William Lynn, a Bloomington detective.

He told the jury that one search asked what would happen if a nondiabetic were given an insulin shot, the (Peoria) Journal Star reported. Another asked how to silence a .40-caliber Glock, the same kind of gun that was used in the slaying.

Leuthold owned such a gun, which he said was stolen during a break-in during which someone else killed his wife. Prosecutors allege he staged the break-in to cover up the killing.

The Leutholds traveled between the United States and Lithuania over 15 years to work as missionaries.

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