Man Charged in Coach Case Plans Insanity Defense

Mark Becker, 24, of Parkersburg, has been charged with first degree murder in the shooting death of Ed Thomas.

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By Aaron Hepker

MASON CITY (AP) - The man accused of gunning down a high school football coach will use a defense of insanity and/or diminished responsibility.

Mason City attorney Susan Flander filed the motion of defense Monday in Butler County District Court for Mark D. Becker. He's charged with first-degree murder in the June 24 killing of Aplington-Parkersburg High School football coach Ed Thomas in the school's weight room.

Also Monday, Flander field a motion seeking access to any mental health or substance abuse committal files involving Becker. Becker's trial is set for Sept. 15 in Butler County. He's being held at the Cerro Gordo County jail in Mason City on $1 million cash bond.
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