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Judge finds probable cause to pursue charges against Wyoming man

SUNDANCE, WY – Crook County resident Edward Svoboda has been bound over to District Court on charges related to the death of his wife of 53 years, last September.

Svoboda appeared in Circuit Court on February 7 for a review of the competency evaluation performed in January at the Wyoming State Hospital.

Judge Matthew F.G. Castano found there to be probable cause to believe an offense – or several offenses – had been committed by Svoboda. He bound the case over to District Court for arraignment and further proceedings.

Svoboda has been charged with murder in the first degree. If convicted, he faces life imprisonment at minimum, and could be given the death penalty, a $10,000 fine or both.

He has also been charged with murder in the second degree, carrying a maximum penalty of life imprisonment, a $10,000 fine or both. The difference between murder in the first and second degree is premeditation: to be convicted of murder in the first degree, Svoboda must be found guilty of purposely killing a human being with “premeditated malice.”

Svoboda also faces a third felony charge of aggravated homicide by vehicle, carrying a maximum penalty of 20 years’ incarceration, a $10,000 fine or both.

Svoboda was arrested on September 5, 2021 after three deputies from the Crook County Sheriff’s Office responded to reports that he had driven his truck into the back yard and struck his wife, Kathleen. She was pronounced deceased when the Hulett ambulance arrived on scene.

While investigating the scene, deputies determined that the victim had been hit and driven over by a pickup truck hauling a trailer.

Svoboda’s case has been assigned to Judge James M. Causey. An arraignment is scheduled for March 24.

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