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Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS — A first-degree murder charge has been changed to a lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter for a Cedar Rapids man accused of fatally shooting another man during a fight.
James J. Siegel, 42, now faces a 10-year sentence, if convicted, instead of a life sentence in the May 13 fatal shooting of Ty John Casey, 39. According to an amended complaint filed Thursday, further investigation revealed a history between the two men and the crime scene and autopsy supported the lesser charge.
Siegel’s actions resulted from a “sudden, violent and irresistible passion” as a result of serious provocation — elements of voluntary manslaughter — by Casey, Linn County Attorney Nick Maybanks stated in the complaint.
Maybanks was asked about the history between Siegel and Casey, but he said he couldn’t provide details.
Police said Siegel called 911 at 9 p.m. May 13 to report a shooting at his home, 3906 Northwood Dr. NE. He told dispatchers he shot Casey, of Cedar Rapids, according to the criminal complaint.
Officers found Casey with a gunshot wound and he died at the scene.
There was another person, not identified in the complaint, in the home at the time who was taken, along with Siegel, to the police department for questioning, according to the complaint.
Siegel told investigators Casey threw a glancing punch at him, and Siegel responded by picking up a Ruger handgun from a nightstand and firing a shot that hit Casey in the upper chest area, the complaint stated.
Casey threw another punch at Siegel and missed, then Siegel shot point blank at Casey a second time, and then fired one more time, hitting Casey in the back, the complaint stated.
Siegel was a newsroom clerk for The Gazette for nearly seven years, leaving the company in early 2007. In a May 24 affidavit for appointment of a public defender, Siegel wrote he was unemployed.
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