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Carroll Twp. man faces trial for wife's death

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Thursday, April 11, 2013, 1:06 a.m.

A 70-year-old Carroll Township man accused of shooting his wife as she slept was ordered to stand trial on a criminal homicide charge.

Ronald Powell appeared Wednesday for a preliminary hearing before Magisterial District Judge James Ellis, who determined there was sufficient evidence to move the case on to Washington County Court.

Powell allegedly told police he awakened 3 a.m. March 29, pulled a loaded shotgun from beneath his bed, placed a light around his neck to illuminate the room and shot Leslie Powell in the head.

Ronald Powell told police he then showered, made coffee and called Washington County 911 to report he had killed his wife.

Trooper Joseph Timms testified Wednesday that Ronald Powell described that scenario just hours after Leslie Powell, 62, died of a single-shotgun blast in the 1566 Walters St. home.

Washington County Coroner S. Timothy Warco confirmed the cause of death Wednesday in the Central Court hearing.

Asked if Powell stated why he shot his wife, Timms said the defendant stated he was stressed about surgery he had earlier that day for an aneurism behind his knee and because he believed his wife was cheating on him.

Timms said Ronald Powell had undergone elective surgery for a nonlife-threatening condition at The Washington Hospital.

Monongahela police officer Pat Conley testified that he and officer Kevin Harris answered the call at the Powell residence, arriving before Carroll Township police came to the scene.

Leslie Powell was lying in her bed under the covers. A shotgun was found on the far side of the bed, and the flashlight was still on, Conley testified.

City police did not speak with Ronald Powell, who surrendered without incident. Ronald Powell was returned to the Washington County Correctional Facility, where he was being held without bond.

Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or

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