David Pietz Found Guilty of Strangling Wife

PHOTO: Nicole Pietz
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The murder trial of David Pietz lasted one month, but jurors needed only a day and a half to find the Washington state man guilty of killing his wife.

Pietz, 34, was convicted of second-degree murder in the death of Nicole Pietz, who vanished from her home in 2006 and was found strangled in a wooded area.

Without any immediate hard evidence, detectives with the King County Sheriff's Office Major Crimes Unit spent six years building their case and arrested Pietz in March 2012 on a second-degree murder charge.

David Pietz Murder Trial: Prosecutors Attacking Accused Killer's Character. Read more here.

In closing arguments, prosecutor Kristen Richardson said small pieces of evidence, including Pietz's alleged extramarital affairs and a mouthguard his wife was wearing when she was found, snowballed into a case against him.

"It was in her mouth because she had gone to bed when the defendant came home and killed her, and carried her naked out of the house ... and put her body in the bushes," Richardson said, according to ABC News' Seattle affiliate KOMO.

Prosecutors said Pietz had been telling co-workers that he thought something must have happened to Nicole, who had previously battled addiction, while she was on the prowl for drugs. Her co-worker Ashley Sauter said she believed that explanation.

"She was supposed to be going to an AA meeting, but that is what probably happened, a drug deal gone bad," Sauter told the court.

But toxicology results showed Nicole Pietz had only small amounts of prescription drugs in her body and no signs of recent abuse, according to testimony.

Pietz did not testify at his trial.

A date for sentencing has not yet been set.

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