A Wisconsin widow who once offered a generous reward for information leading to her husband’s killer has now been arrested for his murder, 13 years later.
Cindy Schulz-Juedes, 65, of Chippewa Falls, was taken into custody the day before Thanksgiving in connection with the killing of her husband Kenneth Juedes, the Marathon County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.
Juedes, 58, was fatally struck by two blasts from a .20-gauge shotgun at his home in Unity in August 2006.
"From the onset of this investigation, all evidence led detectives to believe Kenneth was intentionally shot to death while in his home,” Sheriff Scott R. Parks said in the press release.
During a court appearance Monday, a judge ruled there was enough evidence to proceed with murder charges against Schulz-Juedes, who was then ordered held on $1 million bond. She is expected to be formally charged with first-degree murder at her next court date, scheduled for Dec. 13, Wisconsin Public Radio reports.
In 2007, Schulz-Juedes offered a $25,000 reward for anyone who had solid information about her husband’s murder and has long denied any personal involvement, local outlet WSAW-TV reports. She told WSAW in 2011 that she was being unjustly focused on.
“For anyone to think that I could have been responsible for my husband’s death is unbelievable,” she said, adding that they “loved each other dearly.”
“Ken didn’t have any money,” she told WSAW-TV at the time, referring to investigators' claims that her husband had hundreds of thousands of dollars in life insurance, which could have been a possible motive.
"I don't feel I am a person of interest in my husband's death," Schulz-Juedes reiterated to Wausau Daily Herald in 2013, again denying that she stood to gain financially from Juedes' death, the outlet reports. "Most of the money went to the kids. Moneywise, my husband and I together would have earned more in two years than I ever would have gotten from his death, and I still would have had my husband."
Schulz-Juedes claimed she slept in a camper outside the couple's home the night her husband died and that she walked into the home the next morning to find his body, running to a neighbor's to call 911. Wisconsin Assistant Attorney General Richard DuFour said during the probable cause hearing Monday that Schulz-Judes gave inconsistent statements about the day of the murder.
She also owned a .20-gauge shotgun but claimed it had gone missing from the house a year earlier.
DuFour added that the couple, contrary to Schulz-Juedes' description of their relationship, was having relationship problems that could have led to a divorce, which in turn "could have led to her receiving little, if anything," in the ways of finances, according to Wisconsin Public Radio.
Schulz-Judes' attorney Trevor Peterson argued the evidence against his client arrest is circumstantial.
"Thirteen years shows there actually was a lot of doubt in what's going on there, and the pieces of the puzzle aren't put together," he said, WPR reports.
Juedes worked as a pharmacist and had four children with his first wife before meeting Schulz-Juedes.
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