Testimony From Man Who Hosted Winkler Before Trial

Selmer, Tenn. (AP) -- A man who, along with his wife and son, gave Mary Winkler a place to live prior to her murder trial took the stand for the defense Tuesday in Selmer.

Winkler is accused of first-degree murder in the shotgun shooting of her husband Matthew Winkler just over a year ago.

Rudolph Otto Thompsen, III said he first knew the Winklers from when Matthew Winkler was the youth minister at the Central Church Of Christ In McMinnville, where Thompsen is a member.

He testified that Mary acted differently when her husband was around. He recalled helping get ready for a fellowship dinner at church and said Mary was, as he put it, "bubbling." He said she was happy and was chatting with church members.

Then Thompsen said Matthew walked in and, in his words, "it was like you'd thrown a switch. Her head went down. Her hands went together."

He also testified that during the eight months Mary Winkler lived with his family, she has "blossomed again."

Copyright 2007 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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