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Plea deal in offing for Kuehni

ELLSWORTH — A plea deal appears to have been struck between Pierce County prosecutors and Rose Marie Kuehni, the Prescott woman charged in the 2015 shooting death of her boyfriend.

Multiple sources on Monday confirmed that an agreement has been reached in the case.

Kuehni's attorney, Mark Gherty, said he and his client were "working on the final bit" of a plea deal, though he did not discuss details. A Pierce County Clerk of Court employee said a plea agreement was reached, as did a relative of Douglas Bailey, the victim in the case.

Lisa Elwell, Bailey's sister, said she got word from a Pierce County official on Thanksgiving Day that a plea agreement had been reached. She said the deal involves a plea to a crime other than homicide, though that claim could not be independently verified.

Kuehni was poised to go to trial Dec. 6 in Pierce County Circuit Court on one count of second-degree homicide in the Nov. 22, 2015, shooting death of Bailey at their shared Prescott home. A jury acquitted Kuehni of first-degree homicide in August, but convicted her of hiding a corpse.

The jury was hung on the charge of second-degree homicide and prosecutors decided to retry her on that charge.

Elwell said Pierce County officials told her a plea hearing is now expected to take place on Dec. 6.

The prosecutor in the case, Bill Thorie, did not respond to messages seeking comment on the development.

Mike Longaecker

Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker

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