Jury Deliberates Fate of Woman Accused of Killing Fiancé with Antifreeze
(CLEVELAND) -- A jury is deliberating the fate of an Ohio woman on trial for allegedly killing her fiancé by poisoning his iced tea with antifreeze in 2006. Holly McFeeture, 35, of Cleveland, Ohio, is accused of slowly poisoning Matthew Podolak, 31, with antifreeze by slipping it in his tea in July 2006. McFeeture was arrested in July 2012 and charged with one count of aggravated murder and one count of contaminating substance for human consumption or use. She has pleaded not guilty.
During closing arguments Monday, prosecutors showed jurors how antifreeze would've completely disappeared in a glass of Podolak's favorite drink, raspberry iced tea, side-by-side with a normal glass. Prosecutors say Podolak wouldn't have known the difference.
"No possible way to know that someone was poisoning him except his body showed the signs," Cuyahoga County assistant prosecutor Brian McDonough said. "He fell in love with the wrong woman. She was toxic to him."
Dr. Robert Bux, a Colorado coroner, took the stand Monday as the defense's only witness. Bux, who reviewed Podolak's medical records, said the documents suggest he intentionally swallowed the antifreeze in one lethal dose.
ABC News legal analyst Dan Abrams said, "The defense's quick case makes it clear, that they're hoping that there's reasonable doubt. That maybe this antifreeze was ingested all at one time, making suicide at least a possibility."
A pathologist with the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner's Office, who performed the 2006 autopsy on Podolak, determined he died from chronic intoxication of ethylene glycol, the active chemical in antifreeze, over a period of time.
Prosecutors reminded jurors that McFeeture quickly collected Podolak's life insurance policy and his 401(k) after his death without paying for the funeral.
Still, McFeeture's defense team insists there is no physical evidence that she killed her fiancé.
"You['ve] got to find her innocent," defense attorney Bill Summer said. "You've got to end the nightmare and put to rest this family's tragedy. It's undetermined."
Podolak was taken to Parma General Hospital July 30, 2006, when he started complaining of lower back pain, and died the next day.
The death was ruled a homicide in March of 2011, after a tip received by Cleveland Police provided information that enabled the coroner to rule out suicide and accidental death, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
The couple has two children together.
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