Judge deliberates case against a Missouri State University instructor, accused of killing colleague

Published: May. 31, 2023 at 4:07 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - A judge will now decide the fate of a former Missouri State University instructor charged with killing a colleague.

Edward Gutting is accused of breaking into retired professor Marc Cooper’s Springfield home in August 2016 and stabbing him to death. He also faces charges in an attack on Cooper’s wife as she tried to stop him. Gutting pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to charges of first-degree and armed criminal action charges.

This is a bench trial. Judge David Jones says he will announce his decision Friday at 11 a.m.

Attorneys for both sides wrapped up their cases on Wednesday.

Prosecutors spent about an hour giving their closing arguments. They emphasized that despite Gutting being diagnosed with schizophrenia, he knew exactly what he was doing when he took two knives from his house and drove across town to the Cooper home. The violent incident, they say, was fueled by Gutting’s desire to replace Cooper as a tenured professor in the history department.

Defense attorneys insisted Gutting’s illness prevented him from understanding what he did. They say he went to the Coopers’ home to seek career advice, and although he was intoxicated at the time of the crime, he was having a psychotic episode.

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