Like what you're reading?

We make it easy to stay connected:

to our email newsletters
Download our free apps

Man accused of killing his mother with a crowbar pleads not guilty

Defendant claims he was acting in self-defense

  • Photo

A man accused of killing his mother with a crowbar pleaded not guilty in a written arraignment Tuesday filed in Linn County District Court.

Edward Cusic, 44, of Cedar Rapids, is charged with first-degree murder in the homicide of Anita Cusic-Labkon, 68, who was beaten and had blunt force injuries to her face and arms Dec. 7, 2012, according to court documents.

A trial date hasn't been set at this time. Cusic remains in jail under a $1 million bond.

Cusic told a police dispatcher when he called 911 that night that he killed his mother with a crowbar because she had threatened him with a knife in the home they shared. He told police his mother was bipolar and suicidal.

According to a criminal complaint, Cusic told police his mother had threatened him with a dagger, so he went to the garage where he got a crowbar and used it to kill her.

Police found Cusic-Labkon’s body face up on a bed in the back bedroom, with a crowbar between her legs, according to a search warrant affidavit. Investigators also located a handgun on top of a dresser in the bedroom and a dagger under pillows in the bedroom.

Cusic in a jailhouse interview with a Gazette reporter said he was acting in self-defense that night and only intended to injure his mother. He said his mother pointed a gun at him and said "I'll send you straight to hell."

Cusic also claimed in the interview that his mother carried a .380 handgun in her pocket and had another gun in her bedroom and several daggers in the house.

Give us feedback

Have you found an error or omission in our reporting? Tell us here.
Do you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.