Man charged with triple homicide faces life in prison

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by Chris Patterson

WAUKESHA -- 31-year-old Jaren Kuester is charged with three counts of first degree intentional homicide after allegedly killing three people just south of Madison. Earlier this month a judge set his cash bail for $3 million.

Three bodies were discovered during the morning hours of April 28th at a home in Lafayette County. The victims have been identified as 70-year-old Gary Thoreson and his wife 66-year-old Cloe Thoreson, and Gary's brother Dean Thoreson. All three were from rural South Wayne, WI.

According to the criminal complaint, Kuester drove to Lafayette County and abandoned his car. He ran through a wooded area, and came upon the Thoreson's property. He told police he initially went into the barn on the property, but later broke into the house.

That's when Dean Thoreson entered the house to check on it while his brother and his wife were out of town. The complaint says Kuester confessed to killing Dean with a fireplace poker, and covering up his body with a blanket.

The criminal complaint says Kuester heard Gary and Cloe Thoreson entered the house some time later. Kuester also admitted to killing them both using a fireplace poker. Kuester allegedly told police Gary hit him before being killed.

Police say Kuester drove to his father's house in Waukesha, and that's where police caught up with him.

In addition to the murder charges, Kuester faces burglary and operating a vehicle without the owners consent. If convicted on all five counts, Kuester could be sentenced to life in prison.

Kuester is expected back in court on May 10th for an initial appearance hearing.

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