Widow who offered $25,000 reward in husband's 2006 death arrested in connection with murder

Widow who offered $25,000 reward in husband\
Widow who offered $25,000 reward in husband\'s 2006 death arrested in connection with murder  

WAUSAU, Wis. - The widow of a pharmacist shot to death 13 years ago in central Wisconsin was ordered held on a $1 million cash bond Monday in connection with his murder.

Cindy Schulz-Juedes, 65, of Chippewa Falls, was arrested Nov. 27 and held in the Marathon County Jail, according to a statement Monday by Sheriff Scott Parks.

During an initial court appearance, Judge Michael Moran set the unusually high bond and ordered Schulz-Juedes to surrender her passport. She had not yet been formally charged with homicide at the time of the hearing.

Kenneth E. Juedes, who was a 58-year-old pharmacist for what was then Memorial Health Care in Medford, was found dead on the morning of Aug. 30, 2006, in the town of Hull.

"From the onset of this investigation, all evidence led detectives to believe Kenneth was intentionally shot to death while in his home," Parks wrote in the statement.

Schulz-Juedes had offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in her husband's murder.

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The Marathon County Sheriff's Office for years said that it had a suspect in the case but was unable to produce enough evidence for a conviction. It's unclear what changed and led to the arrest of Schulz-Juedes.

Wisconsin Assistant Attorney General Richard DuFour, who served as prosecutor at the probable cause hearing, said the day Schulz-Juedes discovered her husband dead, she was sleeping outside in a camper. After discovering her husband, she tried to call the police from her home phone but said it wasn't working and then called 911 from a neighbor's house.

DuFour said Schulz-Juedes gave inconsistent statements about what she did the day she found her husband dead and had a strong financial motive for his murder: a valuable life insurance policy as well as property that was sold for $200,000 shortly after he died.

Problems in the relationship also could have led to a divorce, which would have prevented Schulz-Juedes from reaping those benefits, DuFour said.

DuFour also detailed that Juedes was killed by shots fired from a .20 gauge shotgun, and Schulz-Juedes reported a .20 gauge shotgun missing after the homicide.

Schulz-Juedes was long considered to be the main person of interest. Juedes' siblings and investigators have said they believe a $1 million life insurance policy could have been motivation to kill him.

Juedes' children from a previous marriage sued Schulz-Juedes and an insurance company two years after his death, alleging his widow either killed him or participated in his murder. They sought to recover a $280,000 life insurance policy that named Schulz-Juedes and her daughter as beneficiaries, but then settled out of court two years later in 2010 and dropped the wrongful death lawsuit.

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On the 10-year anniversary of her husband's death in 2016, Schulz-Juedes told a reporter for the Wausau Daily Herald she was not interested in commenting further. Three years before that, she told a different Daily Herald reporter that she didn't derive a financial benefit from his death.

"I don't feel I am a person of interest in my husband's death," Schulz-Juedes said in 2013 to the Daily Herald, part of the USA TODAY Network. "Most of the money went to the kids. Moneywise, my husband and I together would have earned more in two years than I ever would have gotten from his death, and I still would have had my husband."

Juedes was shot twice in the chest sometime during the night and there were no signs of a struggle, authorities said in 2006. Schulz-Juedes reported his death shortly before 8:30 a.m. the next day. Schulz-Juedes was on the 30-acre property but told authorities she was not in the home at the time of the shooting.

Juedes grew up in the town of Weston and graduated from D.C. Everest High School in 1966. He and his first wife had four children before they divorced in 1998. Schulz-Juedes was his second wife.

In February 2007, an anonymous person sent the Marathon County Sheriff's Department a letter about the Juedes murder. The letter writer appeared to have knowledge about the homicide and the department asked the writer to contact the department.

Investigators looked into Juedes' business ventures, including Monster Hall Raceway in Unity, which he co-owned. The owners of the track were involved in a dispute over the track's finances.

In August 2016, a Marathon County detective told the Daily Herald that investigators had updated their plan of action in a new bid to close the case. One Marathon County detective planned to spend a majority of his work time devoted to solving the case and another detective planned to investigate the case part time.

Investigators had a strong circumstantial case in 2016 but were hoping for a statement or piece of evidence that would help solve the case.

Schulz-Juedes is due back in court on Dec. 13.

This article originally appeared on Wausau Daily Herald: Wisconsin cold case: Widow arrested in Kenneth Juedes shooting death


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