Testimony Begins For Murder Trial

by Brian Wilson
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Testimony began Tuesday in the First-Degree Murder trial of Kyle Lou Ricke at the Dickinson County Courthouse in Spirit Lake. After completing jury selection this morning, attorneys for each side made their opening statements before the prosecution called their first witnesses.

The first witness to testify was Assistant Algona Police Chief Mark Bacha. Bacha was the other officer on duty in the early evening hours of September 13th, 2023. Bacha testified that Officer Kevin Cram had signaled he was attempting to serve an active arrest warrant for the defendant.

Bacha testified he became concerned when Officer Cram did not signal dispatch or other officers that the situation had been completed.

The prosecution then called Don Heidner, the dispatcher that was working on the night of September 13th at the Kossuth County Law Enforcement Center. Heidner testified as to the communication with Officer Cram as he was attempting to serve an active arrest warrant on Kyle Lou Ricke.

The state then played the 911 call that Heidner received while on duty that night from the defendant’s mother, Irene Ricke.

Benedict Miller of the Iowa State Patrol was the first person to testify Tuesday afternoon. The prosecution then showed the jury video from Officer Cram’s vehicle and his body camera on the night of September 13th, which showed Ricke firing 8 shots at Cram from close range, striking him with each shot.

The state then called the defendant’s mother to testify. Irene Ricke was standing next to Officer Cram when he was shot and killed that evening, attempting to serve an arrest warrant on the defendant out of Palo Alto County. Assistant Attorney General Ryan Baldridge asked Ms. Ricke about her interview with law enforcement following the incident.

Under cross examination, Ricke told the court she knew her son was having a tough time with his personal life.

Ricke said she did not understand what happened because it was not in her son’s nature.

Testimony will resume Wednesday morning at 9AM and could possibly wrap up by the end of the day. The court has noted that if testimony does conclude Wednesday, they will wait until Thursday before beginning closing arguments and handing out jury instructions.

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