Accused Killer Brett Seacat's Allusion to a Suicide Delays Trial

PHOTO: Brett T. Seacat writes on a note pad during the the State v. Brett T. Seacat trial, Kingman, Kan. May 31, 2013.
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The Kansas judge hearing the murder trial of Brett Seacat called a recess today after the former police investigator who is accused of killing his wife apparently alluded to his belief that the woman was suicidal.

"On several occasions I stopped her [wife Vashti Seacat] from doing things I'm not allowed to talk about," he testified this morning.

Prosecutors immediately asked to approach the bench before Judge Larry Solomon called a recess and ordered all attorneys and Seacat to his chambers.

The judge had said at a pretrial hearing that he would not allow testimony related to allegations that Vashti Seacat had a history of suicidal thoughts.

Seacat Defends Himself at Trial

Brett Seacat, 37, also took the witness stand Thursday to explain why he destroyed hard drives and trashed old cellphones around the time of his wife's death.

Prosecutors say Seacat, killed his wife, 34, in April 2011, two days after she served him divorce papers, and then set their house on fire to cover his tracks. Witnesses say they spotted Seacat destroying hard drives one day before his wife's death.

"Why did you melt the two hard drives? As opposed to just tossing them in the trash?" defense attorney Roger Falk asked.

Seacat Says Wife Was Suicidal

"That's what you're supposed to do with hard drives. If you leave a hard drive in the trash, most identity thieves would not have any problem at all accessing the hard drive in some form or another," Seacat responded.

As for the discarded cellphones prosecutors found in the trash of his Kansas office, Seacat testified that he was simply trying to protect his identity.

"Websites that said don't sell your old cellphones said destroy them," he said.

'Forensics Will Carry the Day' at Trial

Seacat is charged with first-degree murder, aggravated arson and aggravated child endangerment. The couple's two children, ages 2 and 4, were in the home and escaped the blaze unharmed. Seacat has pleaded not guilty.

A private investigator hired by the defense testified that he found several vials of a drug called hCG in the Seacats' home. The defense said Vashti Seacat was taking the drug, which has been known to have side effects leading to depression, in an attempt to lose weight. Brett Seacat's brother, Robert, testified earlier this week that he saw Vashti Seacat the weekend before her death and that she was depressed.

But friends testified that Seacat did not seem depressed and was optimistic about starting a life away from Brett. Vashti Seacat's sister, Kathleen Forrest, testified Thursday that Vashti Seacat was using hCG.

The prosecution has said Brett Seacat had a clear motive to kill his wife, the divorce papers she had just served upon him. In an interview with ABC News, Vashti Seacat's family says she never wanted to hurt Brett Seacat with those divorce papers.

"I spoke to her on the phone the night before, and her concerns were not for herself. Her concerns were for how Brett was dealing with this," Vashti Seacat's brother, Rich Forrest, said.

A Kansas Bureau of Investigation agent testified Thursday, the 11th day of the murder trial, that he found a note in Seacat's pocket the night of the deadly fire with a list that read: "1. Calm--died/accident 2. Her parents 3. Everything that the ... truth."

The note also had the phrase "no suicide" on it, according to the testimony.

Prosecutors argue that Seacat's pants had gasoline on them the night of his wife's death, the defense says that investigators were sloppy with the crime scene. A forensic expert testified Thursday that those pants were not properly sealed in the right kind of evidence bag.

The Seacats' marriage counselor, Connie Suderman, testified that Brett Seacat called her after the fire and said, "I killed her. Vashti is dead and it's my fault."

ABC News' Paula Faris contributed to this report.

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