Judge to Decide Fate of Ottumwa Woman Accused of Murder

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An Ottumwa woman accused of killing her daughter in 2018 will have a judge decide her fate when she goes on trial next month.

Kelsie Thomas waived her right to a trial by jury on Thursday. The 24-year-old was acquitted by a jury in March for child endangerment resulting in death. Thomas also faced a first-degree murder charge but the jury could not reach a verdict and Judge Lucy Gamon declared a mistrial. The state decided to retry Thomas for first-degree murder.

Police say Thomas strangled her five-year-old daughter Cloe Chandler in July 2018. Thomas told law enforcement her daughter accidentally hanged herself in a closet but later confessed to the killing in an interview with police.

Thomas’ second trial is scheduled to begin on October 13th.

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