Jury Finds Arterburn Guilty of First Degree Murder

Bradley Arterburn is taken into custody just moments after the jury’s verdict of First Degree Murder is read on Wednesday afternoon.

Oskaloosa, Iowa – It took a Mahaska County jury just over seven and a half hours to find Bradley William Arterburn (27) guilty of First Degree Murder in the death of 58-year-old Robert Henry Horovitz, better known as ‘Hank’.

On June 19, 2011, at approximately 8:38 p.m., officers of the Oskaloosa Police Department were dispatched to 1106 North 4th Street, Oskaloosa, Iowa where they took Bradley Arterburn into custody.

First Degree Murder is a Class “A” Felony, punishable by life in prison.

The jury was given their final legal instructions and began deliberations just before 9 am. They returned their verdict in the afternoon just before 4:30, when the foreman of the jury informed the court that they had reached a decision.

The Defense had plead not guilty to the charges, and contented that Arterburn was insane at the time of the murder.

Bradley’s mother and other relatives were in attendance. Judge Lucy J. Gamon, defense attorneys Allen L. Cook III and Kenneth A. Duker, and prosecutors Assistant Iowa Attorney General Denise A. Timmons and Mahaska County Attorney Rose Anne Mefford were also in attendance.

The presiding juror presented the decision to the court. The court attendant then collected the decision, and upon instruction from Judge Gamon, read the decision aloud. “In the Iowa District Court for Mahaska County, State of Iowa vs. Bradley William Arterburn. Case number FECR063172 [inaudible] verdict number one. We the jury, find the defendant guilty of murder in the first degree.”

Judge Gamon then asked the jury as a whole if this was their verdict. “It is,” was their response to the judge.

Judge Gamon then asked if either party would like the jury to be polled. The defense asked to have the jury polled, an option allowed under Iowa law. Then, one by one, each juror responded “yes” to confirm that was indeed their decision.

Judge Gamon then ordered a pre-sentence investigation, to be handled by the Department of Corrections. “It is my understanding that that will take approximately 12 weeks. Judgement and sentence will be set thereafter.”

After the trial, Kenneth Duker had this to say, “Obviously we’re disappointed for Brad’s sake. I asked the jury to do justice and find the truth, and that’s what they decided.”

I asked Duker where he intended to go with the case now. “From here, we’ll sit back, take a look at everything that happened in the trial. See if there’s any avenues for an appeal. See if there are any avenues for filing a motion in arrest of judgment, a motion for a new trial. We’ll probably sit back with the other attorneys in our office and go through pretty clearly all of the case and see if there’s any grounds for anything.”

Mahaska County Attorney Rose Anne Mefford said afterward. “Obviously we’re pleased with the verdict. I think the trial went very smoothly. I think the evidence came in very concisely.”

Mefford did say that the hard work and professionalism of those involved, from the police to the Attorney Generals office, helped make the job easier. “I owe it all to all those people.”

Mefford said that in order for the Defense to appeal the case, “they would have to allege some error in the process in the trial. To my knowledge, I thought it was a very clean trial. I think the judge runs a very good trial.”

  1. 6/20/2011 – Stabbing in Oskaloosa Leads to First Degree Murder Charge
  2. 6/21/2011 – Arterburn has initial appearance
  3. 6/22/2011 – More Details Come To Light In Local Murder Case
  4. 6/29/2011 – Arterburn’s Day In Court Sets Arraignment Schedule
  5. 7/14/2011 – Arterburn Enters Not Guilty Plea
  6. 3/4/2012 – Arterburn To Undergo Psychiatric Evaluation
  7. 5/15/2012 – Arterburn Trial Set For August 7
  8. 9/25/2012 – Jury Selection Continues In Murder Trial
  9. 9/27/2012 – Gruesome Murder Comes To Light
  10. 9/28/2012 – Arterburn “Just Trying to Make My Mom Suffer”
  11. 9/30/2012 – Expert Witness Defines Defense’s First Day
  12. 10/1/2012 – Arterburn Thought He Was Killing His Molester
  13. 10/2/2012 – Medical Experts Disagree in Arterburn Trial
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