Former Pastor Arthur Schirmer Takes Stand in Murder Trial

The Pennsylvania man accused of killing his wife testifies that it was an accident.
2:08 | 01/22/13

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Transcript for Former Pastor Arthur Schirmer Takes Stand in Murder Trial
right now because we have the trial of the former minister accused of killing his wife. Arthur schumer is in court for the death of his second wife. Abc's alex marquardt has the latest. Reporter: Heading into court, authur shurmur remained calm. What compelled you to testify? Reporter: Once on the stand on friday, collected and showing little emotion, he unequivocally denied any role in the death of his second wife, betty, in 2008. Prosecutors have painted a damming picture, saying shurmur bludgeoned her. I didn't stage an event. Betty began to undo her seat belt, he said. As she did so, a deer came out to the right. We then made it to the guardrail. The 63-year-old former methodist pastor, said he was alone, lost and scared at the hospital, where he asked doctors to take betty off of life support. He told jurors that the decision was agonizing and that he wanted her to live. The next day, he had her cremated. The investigation into betty's death sparked another mysterious 1999 death of his first wife, jewel. Shurmur said she fell down a flight of stairs while vacuuming. Prosecutors now believe he beat her to death, as well. Ewel shurmur. She has two strikes to the right side of her head. A long, cylinder object. Betty shurmur, she has two strikes to the right side of her head. All right? And lacerations looked similar. And the patterns look similar. Reporter: Once this trial ends, he'll stand trial for jewel's murder. He's pled not guilty. If he's found not guilty in this case, it will embolden him to think he will be found not guilty again in the other case. If he's found guilty in this case, tough to know whether it night lead him to be more likely to try to enter into some sort of plea. Reporter: As soon as closing arguments are done this morning, we expect the jury to begin deliberating as early as this afternoon. At the center of the debate will be shurmur's performance, which was said to be emotionless. He told the jury, he's not crying on the outside, but on the inside. Now, to prince out of afghanistan, after a four-month

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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