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Prosecutor: Car salesman strangled pregnant prostitute

Published: Wednesday, April 11, 2012 12:18 p.m. CST

DAVENPORT (AP) — A prosecutor says a Burlington car salesman choked a pregnant Davenport prostitute to death in 2007 and burnt her body before dumping the corpse in a farm field.

During an opening statement Tuesday at Chad Welsh’s murder trial, prosecutor Amy DeVine says Welsh strangled Angela Hennes by putting zip ties around her neck while she was five months pregnant.

She says the evidence will show Welsh is guilty of first-degree murder, abusing her corpse and terminating her pregnancy.

Welsh’s defense attorney, Phil Ramirez, conceded the evidence will show his client lit Hennes on fire to try to cover up what happened. But he told jurors that Hennes died accidentally after she consented to being choked during sex, and his client panicked afterward.