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UPDATE: Alleged kidnapping victim tells her story

June 4, 2013
Messenger News

The woman who was allegedly kidnapped by Kirk R. Levin told her story to a Webster County jury Tuesday morning as testimony begin in Levin's murder and kidnapping trial.

Levin has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of his mother, Marilyn Schmitt, and third-degree kidnapping.

Jessica Vega, 21, of Storm Lake, testified that Levin showed up at her house around 6:37 a.m. on Jan. 3 and asked for help with his car. She said he asked her to drive to Early, and after arriving, she said he told her she was being kidnapped and tied her up with a rope.

Article Photos

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen

Sandra Schmitt, the mother of homicide victim Marilyn Schmitt, testifies Tuesday morning in Webster County District Court. Kirk Levin, 21, of Early, Marilyn Schmitt's son, is facing first-degree murder charges in her death.

The whole time, Vega said she began formulating a plan to try and escape.

"How could I not fight for my life?" she asked.

After she testified that Levin tied her into her car, Vega said he got stuck in a ditch.

A farmer, Gary Schramm, of Early, was driving past the scene when he witnessed Vega's truck in the ditch. He said he offered to help Levin, who said he didn't need any help. At that point, Schramm said Vega, who was lying down in the passenger seat, began screaming that she was being kidnapped and needed help.

Schramm testified that Levin walked away before looking back, then "jogged" away from the scene.

Sac County Sheriff Ken McClure said he began investigating the alleged kidnapping around 8:30 a.m.. After finding inconsistencies in what Levin told both Vega and investigators, he said he decided to do a welfare check on Schmitt.

McClure and three other investigators went to Schmitt's home and began looking for her. Their search eventually led them up a flight of stairs, which were blocked by a chair.

Once at the top of the stairs, McClure said Schmitt's body was found lying face down on the floor.

McClure said he knew it was Schmitt because he went to high school with her.

At that point, McClure said he asked for a search warrant to be issued and began to secure the scene. During the process, McClure said he found two pairs of footprints leading to and from the barn on Schmitt's property.

Jurors also heard testimony from Sandra Schmitt, the mother of Marilyn Schmitt, who said her daughter was happy that Levin was coming to live with her at her home in Early.

McClure's testimony will continue at 1:15 p.m.

 
 

 

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