Iowa man pleads not guilty to murder charge


July 4th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – A Sioux City man has pleaded not guilty to bludgeoning two people in their sleep with a crowbar.  The Sioux City Journal reports that 23-year-old James Kroll entered the plea Monday in Woodbury County District Court. Kroll is charged with first-degree murder, attempted murder and first-degree burglary. Police say Kroll beat 54-year-old Jeffrey Moravek to death and seriously injured 54-year-old Mary Tope after breaking into Tope’s home on June 13. Tope remained hospitalized at Mercy Medical Center-Sioux City last week. An updated report on her condition is not available.
Police say Tope’s daughter, Emily Tope, was in the house at the time and identified Kroll, her former boyfriend. Court papers say Kroll was distraught that his relationship with Emily Tope had ended.