Gutting Trial Date Set in Murder of Retired MSU Professor

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo.– Former Missouri State instructor Edward Gutting had a trial date set for the alleged murder of his colleague and retired professor Marc Cooper.

Gutting’s jury trial will begin on January 29, 2019. On Wednesday, his defense was granted a motion for a mental examination. He is charged with first-degree murder, two counts of armed criminal action, first-degree burglary, and second-degree assault.

Gutting and Cooper worked together at MSU from 2011 to 2014.

Cooper taught history from 1980 to 2014 and served as department head from 1997 to 2003.

When police got to the house on E. University shortly after 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, August 17, 2016, they found Gutting outside the residence, walking in the street covered in blood. He was immediately detained and police did not find any weapons on him.

When officers went inside they found Cooper dead with apparent knife wounds.  Nancy Cooper was taken to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries. 

According to the probable cause statement, Gutting entered the home without permission through the back door wielding a large knife. Gutting chased Cooper from the back door through the living room, stabbing him the entire time until Cooper was knocked to the ground.

While Gutting was assaulting Cooper, Gutting told Nancy Cooper, “it was between him and Cooper” and “he did not want to kill her but he would if he had to”.

Ms. Cooper tried to stop the attack and sustained several cuts during the altercation. She ran from the residence to call for help.

Gutting, if convicted, could be sentenced to death or life in prison.

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