Crime

Kudlach murder trial sees last-minute filings

Alois Kudlach, 51, is charged with first- and third-degree murder, aggravated assault, possession of a weapon and intercepting communications related to the shooting of his wife at the couple’s College Township home in August 2015.
Alois Kudlach, 51, is charged with first- and third-degree murder, aggravated assault, possession of a weapon and intercepting communications related to the shooting of his wife at the couple’s College Township home in August 2015. Centre Daily Times, file

The first Centre County murder trial of 2016 is having some last-minute hiccups.

Alois Kudlach, 51, is supposed to go in front of the jury on Monday for his trial in the death of his wife, Nuria. Kudlach is charged with first- and third-degree murder, aggravated assault, possession of a weapon and intercepting communications related to the shooting at the couple’s College Township home in August 2015.

Kudlach allegedly told police that his wife advanced on him with a knife and he shot her in self-defense.

The case has been continued several times since the initial arrest, with Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller attributing the hurdles to evidence in the case delayed at labs.

The latest motion, however, came from the defense. It is the first such request from Kudlach’s attorney, Karen Muir, who has contended since December that the case was ready for trial.

Muir could not comment on her request, other than to confirm that she had filed the motion. A July 25 order sealed all motions since in the case, and Judge Jonathan D. Grine did not return calls.

However, other court records regarding Kudlach were not sealed.

Search warrants in the case are listed in another heading in the prothonotary’s office. Those records showed new action in the case as of Monday.

According to an application for a warrant filed on Monday, State College police Detective Ralph Ralston filed the information, updating a June request.

That was when Ralston asked for a deeper dive into electronics from Kudlach’s Gregor Way home, specifically an HP Elitebook that was affiliated with Kudlach’s employer, Philips Ultrasound, originally recovered shortly after the shooting.

“Multiple pieces of evidence were seized. In addition, multiple electronic devices, one of which was an HP Elitebook ...” wrote Ralston in that request. “The laptop was subjected to forensic analysis by the PA Office of Attorney General Technical Services Unit and was found to be encrypted.”

The company was able to help decrypt the computer after authorities listened to recorded calls between Kudlach, incarcerated at Centre County Correctional Facility, and his son, Alex. Police said in the request that Kudlach directed his son to contact the company about retrieving personal documents from the servers.

Ralston said in the warrant request that a supervisor did locate some “minor personal information.”

The new information, which is date stamped Aug. 3 by the district court and Aug. 8 by the prothonotary, shows a new inventory of seized property, listing “computer forensics examination report and one DVD containing audio files.”

An amended sealing order was then filed on Aug. 5.

Jury selection has already occurred for the trial.

Lori Falce: 814-235-3910, @LoriFalce

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