Bond set at $1 million for man accused in 2008 homicide of Brittany Zimmermann

Published: Dec. 3, 2020 at 4:19 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 3, 2020 at 6:36 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - A 53-year-old man accused of killing a University of Wisconsin- Madison student in 2008 had his bond set at $1 million in cash Thursday in court.

David Kahl is facing charges of first degree intentional homicide of then 21-year-old Brittany Zimmermann in the case and was charged in March.

In court virtually on Thursday, Kahl’s attorney argued the evidence in the case was circumstantial.

Brittany Zimmermann’s brother, Matthew, said her death and the years since have taken a toll on the family and emotionally pleaded for no bond to be issued.

“I do not believe Mr. Kahl should get bond on this day due to the fact that he is at the end of his ropes, you could say in his life what does he have to lose?” Matthew Zimmermann asked. “What is stopping him from going out and feeling the fresh air and sunshine on his face and victimizing someone else, doing something like he did to my sister.”

The 21-year-old from Marshfield was studying Medical Microbiology and Immunology when she was stabbed to death on April 2, 2008, in her apartment on the 500 block of Doty Street .

According to a criminal complaint, detectives say Kahl, who live about a mile from Zimmermann’s apartment, was panhandling for money on April 2, 2008. They said he made a loop, approaching four different people over the course of 50 minutes.

The complaint states that as Kahl walked down Wilson Street, Bedford, and finally Doty Street, asking people for $40. Police say the timeline puts him at Zimmermann’s apartment at the time of her murder.

Detectives say they brought him in for questioning that day, and say he told them he asked people for money to buy crack. The complaint states he admitted to being high that day. Detectives also noticed he had small cuts on his hand. A few days later, police say Kahl told them he had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia a few years prior and was off his medications.

In 2018, analysts matched Kahl’s DNA with evidence from Zimmermann’s shirt. Police announced David Kahl’s arrest in early 2020 after DNA evidence linked him to the crime.

Kahl is currently an inmate in the Oshkosh Correctional facility for his seventh OWI until next year. If he is able to post bond, he will be on 24 hour GPS monitoring.

His next court appearance will be a status conference on Dec. 11.

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