Fort Dodge, Iowa — On Wednesday morning, August 5th, an arrest warrant was approved for Justin Hurdel in Webster County for again violating a no-contact order filed by his estranged wife, court records show. Three hours later Maggie Hurdel was dead, shot-and-killed by her husband, police say.
Officers found Maggie suffering from a gunshot wound at the her home at 526 South 19th Street in Fort Dodge just after 2:00 pm on Wednesday. Despite life-saving efforts by first responders, she was pronounced dead at the scene. Police immediately announced they were looking for Justin Hurdel for questioning.
Police found Justin Hurdel’s truck abandoned in rural Webster County on Wednesday evening. On Thursday morning police responded to a report of a suspicious person nearby. A police canine, Swamper, led police to a shed where Hurdel was found hiding.
Justin Hurdel is now charged with the First Degree Murder of his estranged wife, the ultimate escalation after months spent threatening and beating her and more than a decade of abusing numerous female victims, court records show.
Justin Hurdel, 43, has spent more than two years of his life behind bars for crimes against women. In 1996 he spent just two days in jail after being found guilty of abusing an ex-wife. In 2007, he was sentenced to a year in prison for abusing another woman. In 2012 he was convicted of burglarizing another woman’s home and charged with stalking her. He’d be sentenced to another year in prison. In 2016 he was arrested for damaging an ex-girlfriend’s car and her friend’s home.
Mixed in with all of those crimes against are dozens of other run-ins with the law, including five arrests for varying degrees of assault as well charges for illegal possession of drugs and explosives.
The criminal paper trail first leads to Maggie Hurdel in November of 2019. Maggie called police to report her husband threatening her life. “I will kill you if your try to leave” and “you’ll be dead anyways” before allegedly spitting in her face. Justin Hurdel was found guilty of Disorderly Conduct by the court for the threats. He paid a $65 fine.
Then, late last month, police were called to again intercede between Maggie and Justin Hurdel. On July 20th, 2020, Maggie reported to police that Justin had spit in her face and told her “wait and see what I do to you bitch.” Later that day Maggie called police again, this time after Justin allegedly grabbed her by the throat and threw her to the ground. A police report noted redness and marks around Maggie’s throat. Justin was again arrested and bonded out.
On August 1st, four days before she was murdered, Maggie again filed a police report against Justin. This time she accused of him making numerous phone calls and text messages to her in violation of a no-contact order. According to electronic court records, the case was filed at the Webster County Courthouse and a warrant for Justin Hurdel’s was issued at 11:15 a.m. on Wednesday August, 5th.
Less than three hours later, Maggie Hurdel was shot in her home, allegedly by her estranged husband. On Friday, the the case for violation of no-contact order against Justin Hurdel was dismissed. He faces life in prison without the possibility of parole if convicted of the First Degree Murder of Maggie Hurdel.