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The Prescott Daily Courier | Prescott, Arizona

home : latest news : local October 06, 2015

11/7/2013 1:30:00 PM
Pair accused in ALS murder will go trial in late 2014
Mueller and Todd
Mueller and Todd
Scott Orr
The Daily Courier

PRESCOTT - A man and woman accused of killing the woman's husband last year have a trial date tentatively set for November 2014.

Charles "Chuck" Todd, 62, and Cynthia Mueller, 49, are alleged to have smothered David W. Mueller, 52 as he lay in bed.

David had been suffering from ALS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis - a degenerative neuromuscular disease also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

He was found dead in the couple's home in the 1800 block of Windy Walk Lane in Prescott.

Todd implicated Cynthia when he was arrested, saying they were having an affair and both took part in the murder, according to a Prescott Police Department search warrant affidavit.

He said Cynthia told him David was dying and asked how they could "make it quicker," the affidavit said, and Todd suggested suffocating him.

About 2 a.m. on Nov. 16, she started the process and Todd took over, holding a plastic trash bag and pillow over his face until he stopped breathing, Todd said.

Todd told investigators that he had been having an affair with Cynthia since March 2012, but after David's death she refused further involvement with him, saying she would not need him anymore.

In a January 2013 interview with The Daily Courier, she flatly denied an affair and said she had no involvement in David's death.

She and Todd appeared in court Tuesday. Cynthia sobbed throughout the proceedings, a status conference, turning her seat in the jury box away from Todd.

Her attorney, Greg Clark, addressed a couple of motions, the first a no-contact order between Cynthia and her minor children. He noted that the children are in the custody of an out-of-state family member and asked for his client to be able to write and call them on the telephone.

Superior Court Judge Celé Hancock agreed to lift the order, as long as the guardian monitors the communications.

Clark also asked that Hancock modify the conditions of Cynthia's release. She's been held without bond, and he wanted Hancock to change that.

"She does not have the means to leave the jurisdiction," Clark said. "And her family does have the ability to set her up (with a home) in the jurisdiction."

Deputy County Attorney Steve Sisneros objected. She's facing a possible life sentence, he said, and "she wanted to leave when she was a mere witness," when Todd was arrested and before she had been charged. "She made statements about getting her passport and leaving," he said. "Nothing is holding her here."

Hancock denied the motion.

Follow the reporter on Twitter @AZNewsguy.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Sunday, August 17, 2014
Article comment by: andrew minty

... he was my brothers best friend. David was brilliant beyond what most people can comprehend.He was an exceptionally good person who before his condition, when my bro got a serious head injury, was in hospital every day for months. David, my bro, and I climbed a real tall radio tower for fun in our teens. Anyway, David was not one to give up. ...

Posted: Saturday, November 09, 2013
Article comment by: @ @Mary Royce

Yes, only a physician can deliver the final mercy. Pain medication sufficient to kill the pain, rather than suffocation. None can admit, but we thank them.

Maybe she can plead for mercy as a widow.

Your claim of being a professional lacks credibility.

Posted: Friday, November 08, 2013
Article comment by: Uncle Remus

Did anybody read the part about her using the other murderer for assistance? Does that sound like a "mercy killing"? I'm not arguing for or against mercy killings but the motive doesn't sound anything like mercy. It sounds more like she wanted him gone for whatever reasons and used herself to lure that dope into helping her kill her sick husband. Motives? Insurance money, tired of taking care of a sick man, who knows? I recall an earlier article where she was saying how much of a burden this whole investigation was for her. Not a mention about her ill husband.
My thoughts? She just couldn't wait for the illness to kill him. No patience. Looks like they did it and should pay for it. There was no mercy intention.

Posted: Thursday, November 07, 2013
Article comment by: @Mary Royce

Oh I don't know what i'm talking about? I am actually a neurologist from the valley. I do know exactly what I'm talking about. It doesn't matter what hospice says, he was going to die and he was going to die slowly and painfully. It was a mercy killing.

Posted: Thursday, November 07, 2013
Article comment by: Mary Royce

This was NOT a mercy killing. You do not know what you are talking about. Hospice said he was not even close to death - ...

Posted: Thursday, November 07, 2013
Article comment by: Free Them

It was a mercy killing! Let them go! Helping people with the worst disease known to man kind is not a crime!

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