Alleged Church Shooter Pleads Not Guilty

Lawyer enters plea on behalf of suspect still in Ill. hospital
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 11, 2009 1:46 PM CDT
Alleged Church Shooter Pleads Not Guilty
A display outside the First Baptist Church offers offer sympathy as the church prepares for prayer and grief counseling.   (AP Photo)

An attorney for the man accused of gunning down an Illinois pastor and wounding two churchgoers with a knife entered a not guilty plea for his client today, and asked for a jury trial. The man, Terry Sedlacek, 27, is charged with murder and aggravated battery in Sunday's attack at the First Baptist Church in Maryville.

Authorities say Sedlacek killed Rev. Fred Winters during an early service as about 150 congregants watched in horror, then tried to harm himself with a knife. Two congregants subdued him, suffering knife wounds in the process. Both Sedlacek and one of the men who subdued him remain hospitalized. Police found an arsenal of guns in Sedlacek's room, according to documents filed yesterday, and an index card marked "Last Day Will." (More church shootings stories.)

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