LIVE COVERAGE: Closing Arguments in Becker Trial

Mark Becker walks back into the courtroom after a short break in the morning. m0218Becker - Butler County Courthouse, Allison, Iowa. Thursday, Feb. 18th, 2010. Trial for Mark Becker who is accused of the June 24th, 2009, murder of Coach Ed Thomas in Parkersburg. (Andrea Melendez/The Register)


By Becky Ogann

ALLISON - Closing arguments in the Mark Becker murder trial start 9 a.m. today in Butler County District Court. Testimony wrapped up Tuesday after the state's second rebuttal witness testified. The trial started two weeks ago.

Two medical experts for the defense diagnosed Becker, 24, as paranoid schizophrenia and said he was legally insane June 24 when he shot and killed legendary football coach Ed Thomas. He was having delusions and hallucinations in which he believed Thomas was Satan.

Two medical experts of the state agreed with the diagnosis of schizophrenia, but said Becker wasn't insane. He understood the nature and quality of his acts and could distinguish between right and wrong.

The jury will likely go into deliberations by noon.

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