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Jury Finds Daniel Messel Guilty Of Murder
Updated August 11, 2016 6:47 AM | Filed under: Crime
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(NASHVILLE) - After about 5 hours of deliberating, a Brown County jury found Daniel Messel guilty of murdering Hannah Wilson.

Wilson's family shed tears and Messel looked at the jurors as the verdict was read and each of the 8 women and 4 men responded that they had voted guilty.

The jury returned to the courtroom at 3:38 p.m.

Messell, a print shop worker from Bloomington, was found guilty of killing 22-year-old Hannah Wilson two weeks before she was to graduate from Indiana University. A passerby found Wilson's body on April 24, 2015 in a parking lot laying face down at State Road 45 and Plum Creek Road near Helmsburg. Wilson had been reported missing the day before the discovery of her body. Messell's cell phone was found next to her body.

An autopsy determined that Wilson had died from blunt force injuries to the back of her head.

The jury also determined Messel was guilty of being a habitual offender.

That verdict could add an additional 20 years to his sentence. He is facing a 45 to 65 year prison sentence on the murder conviction.

Messel's prior convictions include three convictions of battery and one for forgery. Brown County Prosecutor Ted Adams presented the jury with court records showing Messel pleaded guilty in Monroe County to forgery in 1989, felony battery in 1990 and battery with a deadly weapon and battery resulting in serious injury in 1996.

The murder conviction carries a sentence of 45 to 65 years.

EARLIER - Jurors are now deliberating to decide if 51-year-old Daniel Messel is guilty or innocent of killing 22-year-old Hannah Wilson.

Their morning began at 9 a.m. hearing closing arguments in Brown County Circuit Court in Nashville. They began their deliberations at 11 a.m.

Brown County Deputy Prosecutor Jim Roberts described Messel as a "brutal, cowardly killer" when he took the life of 22-year-old Hannah Wilson two weeks before she was to graduate from Indiana University.

A passerby found Wilson's body on April 24, 2015 in a parking lot laying face down at State Road 45 and Plum Creek Road near Helmsburg. Wilson had been reported missing the day before the discovery of her body. Messell's cell phone was found next to her body.

An autopsy determined that Wilson had died from blunt force injuries to the back of her head.

Brown County Deputy Prosecutor Jim Roberts told jurors this morning:

  • Messel's phone by the feet of Hannah Wilson.
  • Hannah Wilson's blood was found on his car.
  • Hannah Wilson's hair was found on the console of Messel's car.
  • Hannah Wilson's blood was found on Messel's IU pullover and his bloody jeans and shoes in a trash bag as he was arrested

Defense attorney Dorie Maryan presented a different picture, claiming her client is innocent, unfairly accused as soon as police found his cell phone under 22-year-old Hannah Wilson's dead body on April 24, 2015.

The jury than began deliberating.

If they convict 51-year-old Messel of murder, they will then consider whether his past criminal record makes him a habitual offender, which would add years to his prison term.



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