OSKALOOSA — An Oskaloosa man has, for a second time, entered a guilty plea in a double stabbing case.

An attorney for Robert William Powell, 46, of Oskaloosa, last week filed paperwork with the court showing an apparent plea deal has been reached with prosecutors. The court hasn’t yet accepted Powell’s new plea or set a hearing.

Powell was arrested in January 2020 after police said he stabbed two women in Oskaloosa. That led authorities to charge him with two counts of attempted murder and two counts of willful injury causing serious injury.

He had filed a guilty plea two months after he was charged to one count of attempted murder and two counts of willful injury. However, he wrote a letter to the court stating he wanted to fire his public defender and sought to have his plea changed to not guilty.

A new attorney was appointed to Powell. In May 2021, that attorney withdrew after Powell wrote another letter to the court asking that he be fired. A judge then appointed Gary Oldenburger in May.

The plea documents filed Wednesday by Oldenburger, and signed by Powell, suggest that prosecutors have offered the same negotiated plea to Powell as they had in 2020. Judges are not bound by the sentences agreed to, and may impose a difference sentence if they wish.

If the deal is accepted by the court, Powell would be sentenced to 55 years in prison, with a mandatory minimum of 23.5 years. Powell is a habitual offender, which further enhances sentencing guidelines for his charges.

Powell has been held in custody he was arrested on a $1 million cash only bond.

Kyle Ocker is the editor of the Oskaloosa Herald and the Ottumwa Courier. He can be reached at kocker@oskyherald.com. Follow him on Twitter @Kyle_Ocker.

Trending Video

Group Editor

Kyle Ocker is a Centerville native and award-winning multimedia journalist. Kyle is currently the president of the Iowa Freedom of Information Council and vice president of the Iowa Print Sports Writers Association.

Recommended for you