A three-day jury trial is scheduled for Blake S. Schindler, 19, who is accused in the murder of Kenneth Allen Jr. at his home in 2016.
The trial is slated to begin Tuesday, Aug. 27, at the Franklin County Judicial Center in front of Michael S. Wright, 12th District judge in Warren County.
Schindler has been charged with second-degree felony murder, and felonies of first-degree burglary and receiving stolen property.
Timothy D. Wonish, 33, and Whitney D. Robins, 30, were sentenced in October 2018 to seven years in the Missouri Department of Corrections on the charge of involuntary manslaughter.
Allen, 70, was killed Nov. 3, 2016, at his home south of Washington.
The medical examiner’s report indicates Allen died from asphyxiation due to neck compressions. The suspects allegedly bound the man’s hands and feet.
According to court documents, the suspects planned to kill Ken Allen. The plan was developed in retaliation for an incident that occurred two days prior to Allen’s death when the victim allegedly took Schindler’s brother to the hospital as a result of an apparent drug overdose, according to court records.
Court records state that Robins made statements to investigators during her arrest admitting that she was present at the time of the killing and that she participated in tying up Allen’s legs.
The suspects were located at a residence shortly before midnight Nov. 4, 2016, in South St. Louis County and were in possession of nine credit cards, seven checks and other items that belonged to Allen, according to investigators with the St. Louis Major Case Squad.
Allen was found dead later that day by a man who went to his home to do yard work.
Schindler and Robins are half siblings. Wonish and Robins married while in custody Oct. 14, 2017.
Authorities allege Robins initially told investigators that she, Wonish and Schindler were together when they entered Allen’s home.
During the sentencing hearing last October, Wonish denied that Schindler was present when he and Robins broke into the home, tied up Allen and then left.
Wonish told the court he was “high” at the time they broke into Allen’s home.
“I remember being high and blacked out,” Wonish stated in court. “(We) tied up Mr. Allen and left him in the house — it was me and Miss Robins. No one else.”
Robins stated she remembers “flashes” from that night, including her and Wonish tying Allen’s feet with a lamp cord.
“You told law enforcement that two other people were there,” pressed Judge Wright.
“I don’t recall now,” Robins stated. “The first I remember is him being on the ground kicking his feet — I don’t want to say something based on assumptions under oath.
“I had overdosed twice the day this happened,” she added. “Tying his feet is burned in my mind.”
The three defendants had been represented by public defenders, and all were offered the same deal of seven years in the Missouri Department of Corrections. Wonish and Robins also were fined $5,000 each.
However, Schindler’s family hired a private attorney who requested a jury trial on his behalf.
Judge Wright was appointed by the Missouri Supreme Court Jan. 26, 2018, to hear the case after Franklin County Circuit Judge Craig Hellmann recused himself.
Judge Hellmann was assigned the case after former Presiding Judge Gael D. Wood retired from the bench in October 2017.
Both Judges Hellmann and Wood rejected previous plea deals for Wonish, Robins and Schindler.