Former deputy to plead not guilty due to mental disease in homic - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Former deputy to plead not guilty due to mental disease in homicides

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Andrew Steele Andrew Steele

 MADISON (WKOW) -- Court records show former Dane County Sheriff's deputy Andrew Steele will plead not guilty by mental disease or defect in connection to the killings of his wife and sister-in-law.

Online court records also show the 40-year old Steele will offer "involuntary intoxication" as part of his defense.

Steele left the Sheriff's Office last year after being diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, a muscle-wasting condition. 

Authorities say Steele fatally shot 39-year old Ashlee Steele, and 38-year old Kacee Tollefsbol at the Steele family home in Fitchburg in August. 

In the months before the homicides, Ashley Steele used social media to provide updates on Andrew Steele's condition, and fund raise in expectation of the costs of future treatments and medications outpacing the family's ability to pay, or cover with insurance.

Online court records offer no information on whether the claimed intoxication is related to Steele's medication regimen. reports experts retained by Steele will argue Steele's mental deterioration because of the disease, combined with medications, altered his thinking.

Some experts say mental acuity can remain intact for patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, despite acute physical deterioration.

An insanity-type defense would require a first trial to determine if Steele was guilty of the killings, and a second trial to determine if Steele is legally responsible for his actions.

Steele's trial is scheduled for April.

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