Valentine’s Day has always been recognized as the day we celebrate love. Couples go out for a lovely time, families come together, and friends meet up for drinks and dancing. It is a day full of love and laughter. But, not for everyone, and especially not for Denise Leuthold, the wife of Nathan Leuthold.
She was brutally murdered by the love of her life on the day we celebrate love! There can be no sadder or tragic end to someone’s life than this. But who are Nathan and Denise Leuthold, and what exactly happened on that fateful day? More importantly, where is Nathan Leuthold now?
Where is Nathan Leuthold Now?
Police officials discovered the body of Denise Leuthold on 14th February 2013 at 3 pm inside the front door of her Peoria house in Illinois. During the investigation and trial in 2014, several pieces of evidence were found against Nathan Leuthold. He claimed to have left his house around 11:15 am and came back around 3 pm to find his wife’s lifeless body.
The trial went on for 6 days and almost 40 witnesses testified against him. One witness attested to the fact that she saw Nathan in a black sweatshirt around 12 pm after he left Denise’s car at a park. Another witness one of his fellow inmates said Nathan had confessed to killing his wife.
The jury recovered several emails and messages along with the browser histories. There was other innumerable evidence like the diary and note, which led the jury to convict Nathan Leuthold of first-degree murder. The decision came only after a discussion of 2 hours. This is proof that the evidence against him was so overwhelming, there was not much debate about his innocence.
Following his conviction, Nathan Leuthold has appealed twice against the charges. The first appeal was made after his conviction, and the second one was made in 2016. However, both his pleas were rejected. Nathan Leuthold is now serving a sentence of 80 years for killing his wife, Denise Leuthold at the Menard Correctional Home under the Illinois Department of Corrections. In 2093, Nathan will be eligible for parole.
The Case Of Nathan Leuthold And Denise Leuthold
Nathan and Denise were childhood sweethearts and were married on 15th July 1995 in La Salle Illinois. Due to their religious background, they could not date in school, even though Nathan was already smitten by her bouncy curls and infectious smile. Denise’s mother, Diane, said in an interview that Nathan practically lived over at their place. In 1992, Denise and Nathan were admitted to a Minnesota college and were engaged soon after that.
They lived a good life and had three children named Seth, Jenelle, and Julia. By February 2013, the Leuthold family had settled into their Peoria house. On the fateful afternoon of 14th February 2013, Nathan Leuthold came back home with his youngest child Jenelle to find the garage open. Denise’s car was not there, and there were shards of broken glass elsewhere.
He left his daughter with a neighbor and called the police immediately. Initially, everyone thought it was a burglary because there were signs of forced entry, and several things like jewelry, a laptop, a camera, and even two guns were stolen. Denise still had all her clothes on when she was killed, which made the investigators think someone shot her as she entered.
This means the killer was present there beforehand. Three costly rings which used to be hidden, were also stolen. Other expensive items were left untouched. More importantly, Denise’s car keys were found with her. But they found her car at a nearby park with duplicate keys.
An unknown burglar will never know the location of the rings, and neither will he have time to search for a duplicate key. The police discovered some written materials by Denise Leuthold. This is when things started getting worse for Nathan Leuthold.
The Reason Behind The Murder
The reason behind the murder of Denise came to light when the police found a note where she expressed her sadness over her husband’s infidelity with a 20-year-old named Aina Dobilaite. The couple had met her during a Lithuania mission during the 1990s, and Nathan became her sponsor when she went to study in Florida.
Aina and Nathan met several times at various places, like hotels and spas. Aina’s school had even asked her to leave since it was inappropriate to be in a relationship with a sponsor. They never confirmed this relationship, but it never needed much confirmation.