Reporting Esme Murphy
HUDSON, Wis. (WCCO) – The father accused of murdering his three young daughters back in July was in attendance at a hearing Monday.
Aaron Schaffhausen once again showed no emotion as he was brought into the courtroom in shackles. The Defense is trying to get some evidence thrown out, including an interview where Schaffhausen sobbed when he was first arrested.
Schaffhausen drove himself to the River Falls Police Department on July 10 and was taken into custody. His ex-wife, Jessica, called police minutes earlier to report that Schaffhausen had called her and told her that their three young daughters – Amara, Sophie and Cecilia – were dead.
The girls were found stabbed to death in the River Falls home where they lived with Jessica.
Investigator Charles Golden testified during a videotaped jailhouse interview where he told Schaffhausen that “only a father would cover his children so they could be at peace.”
Golden testified that Schaffhausen replied by sobbing. He also noted that Schaffhausen did not answer most questions during the three house interview, but at times responded by shaking his head yes or no, including when he was asked to identify his children in photographs.
The defense also wants to throw out testimony from a former teacher and friend of Schaffhausen. Early in the day, Schaffhausen’s chemistry professor at University of Wisconsin River Falls, Dr. Jamie Schnieder, testified that they both had kids in the same after school program.
She told the court that Schaffhausen was upset about the divorce, fearful that his daughters would be taken away from him and that his ex-wife would take them to Illinois because she had a “sugar daddy.”
The defense has hinted that they may enter an insanity plea, and that Schaffhausen’s silence through most of the interview was an indication that he was using his constitutional right not to be interviewed.
However, criminal defense attorney Joe Tamburino said that will be hard to prove because Schaffhausen’s wife says Aaron scheduled a visit with the three girls, then called her and told her she could come home because the girls were dead.
“If you have phone calls saying I am coming in, phone calls saying you could leave the house I will stay with the kids and then the last phone call being come back that goes to show that he knew what he was doing that he had intent. He had some plan that he was able to recognize his actions,” Tamburino said.
The judge has set a Dec. 14 deadline for a possible insanity plea. The decision on the motions to throw out the evidence is expected at a hearing on January 17.