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Police Briefs 06/06/13

June 4, 2013

Kuester stands mute;

judge enters not-guilty plea

A judge entered not-guilty pleas Monday on behalf of a Waukesha man accused of killing three family members in Lafayette County after the man's attorney talked him out of pleading guilty.

Jaren Kuester, 31, faces five felony counts, including three counts of firstdegree intentional homicide, in the deaths of Gary and Chloe Thoreson and Gary Thoreson's brother, Dean Thoreson.

Kuester's public defender, Guy Taylor, said he was just starting to tell Judge William Johnston that Kuester stood mute when Kuester stood up and told the judge he wanted to plead guilty.

Taylor said he immediately conferred with Kuester and they agreed he would stand mute. Johnston entered not-guilty pleas for him on all five counts. Taylor said he couldn't comment on why Kuester tried to plead guilty.

Prosecutors say Kuester drove from Waukesha to Green County April 26, abandoned his SUV, stripped off his clothes and ran through the woods. They say he broke into Gary and Chloe Thoresons' farmhouse and killed them as well as Gary Thoreson's brother, Dean Thoreson.

Taylor said Kuester is confused about the line between reality and delusion.

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