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Trial of Milwaukee man suspected of killing woman and child begins

Victims stabbed and house set ablaze
Posted at 6:30 PM, Apr 18, 2017

The trial is underway for the Milwaukee man accused of killing a woman and her four-year-old daughter.

Jessica Ellenberger and her daughter, Madyson Marshel were allegedly stabbed to death by Patrick Fowler  before their house then set on fire last year in March. Jury selection wrapped up Tuesday morning and they got right to work hearing opening statements throughout the afternoon. 

"I think this will be a difficult case to stomach and an easy case to decide," said Assistant District Attorney Michael Lonski.

Fowler took a seat in the courtroom facing the jury that will decide his fate for the first time.

"As frenzied and hot blooded murder as Ms. Ellenberger was, his murder of Madyson Marshel is very cold blooded," Lonski said.

Lonski said Fowler is accused of killing his then-girlfriend and her daughter after an argument at their duplex.

"He stabs Ms. Ellenberger over 30 times while her daughter stands there and screams, ‘Mommy Mommy’," he said.

Lonski said Fowler told detectives he proceeded to kill the four-year-old, and then set the house on fire before taking off. The victim's uncle and owner of this duplex, John Ellenberger testified about what he saw after arriving to the scene on March 19.

"One thing I noticed was a blood trail as he dragged me out," Ellenberger said.

Fire crews followed Ellenberger into the home to find both victims dead.

"There were no discernible signs of a person, it was charred beyond recognition," said firefighter Brian Madderom.

After the incident, Fowler fled the state. He was captured in Arkansas a couple days later.

"The issue in this case is who committed that brutal criminal act," said Defense Attorney Calvin Malone.

Malone did not share who else could have been responsible, but suggests that argument is to come.

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