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MUSCATINE – The arraignment of a Muscatine man who stands accused of first degree murder in the death of Kaitlyn Palmer is scheduled for Nov. 27 at 11 a.m.

Muscatine County Attorney Alan Ostergren said he does not believe David J.S. Hatfield, 23, will appear in court, saying a plea would be filed in writing.

“We have only just filed the trial information, it’s way too early to speculate on a motive,” Ostergren said.

According to court documents, Ostergren has filed for information on Palmer from the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and from Muscatine Fire and Ambulance. He has also requested information from Rochelle (Illinois) Township High School regarding Hatfield’s attendance at the school. Palmer also attended the school, as well as medical records on Palmer.

The charge filing reports at about 10:51 p.m. on Oct. 16, Hatfield called 911 to report his girlfriend had tried to commit suicide in front of him by shooting herself in the head at Saulsbury Recreation Area. Through the investigation and subsequent interview, the report says Hatfield admitted to shooting Palmer one time in the left side of the head/temple area with a .22-caliber handgun. Hatfield further admitted to having fired a practice shot before shooting Palmer.

Palmer was transported to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City where she died at about 3:26 p.m. Oct. 17. The cause of death is understood to be a gunshot wound to the head.

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