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Men who considered Schaffhausen a friend when they worked with him in early 2012 testified that they liked him, but that he was distraught over his divorce. Both when drinking and sober, he casually mentioned strange things about killing his family, they said.
Schaffhausen said things like: “I want to go kill my kids, then my ex-wife. After her I will go to the man’s house she is sleeping with, kill him, cut his head off, put it on a stake in my front yard and then I will sit back and have a beer,” co-worker and ex-roommate Jeremy Michels wrote in an e-mail to police after the killings, according to testimony.
Another time, Schaffhausen blurted out during a card game a thought about killing his family, Michels testified. And when Michels told him that was weird or crazy, Schaffhausen responded something like: “Is it really?” Michels testified.
Friend Jon Paul said Schaffhausen mentioned killing his daughters to get back at Jessica, saying the girls were all they had together and now that their marriage was done, they shouldn’t have them, either.
Schaffhausen had commented that he wanted to show Jessica “who he is and what he’s capable of doing” and that “she would have to live with it for the rest of her life,” according to prosecutors’ questioning when Paul was on the witness stand.
Another former roommate who said he was “really good friends“ with Schaffhausen described a kind man who helped the roommate’s family financially.
The man told police about threats after the murders, according to questions from prosecutors. But on the witness stand Friday, the man said he hadn’t been taking his medications before that police interview and repeatedly said he could not recall many of the details prosecutors asked about it. He said being under-medicated may have clouded his judgment during that interview.
When testimony in the case resumes Monday there will be tighter security at the courthouse, according to Sheriff John Shilts. Shilts said a potential threat inside the courthouse Friday morning resulted in one person being taken into custody, but added there was no known threat to the public. He gave no details.
Pam Louwagie • 612-673-7102