BRIGHAM CITY — A 20-year-old Perry man accused of stabbing and killing his ex-wife made his first appearance in court Monday, after being charged with first-degree felony murder and other charges.
Spencer Gerlach was led into 1st District Court in handcuffs and shackles, appearing before Judge Thomas Willmore. On Thursday, April 23, he was charged with murder and committing domestic violence in the presence of a child, a third-degree felony, in connection with the killing of Keltsie Gerlach.
Judge Willmore assigned a public defender to the case and ordered Gerlach to remain in the Box Elder County Jail on a $50,000 cash only bail.
Outside the courtroom, Box Elder County attorney Stephen Hadfield said he is considering filing a request to increase that bail amount.
“When he was booked into jail, he was booked on just a murder charge,” said Hadfield. “When we got the case and looked at it, there was an additional charge that we added, domestic violence in the presence of a child. So there is an additional charge. Bail could be up by another $5,000.”
Police report they received a call from Gerlach on April 15 saying he had just killed his ex-wife. When officers responded to the apartment at 691 South 600 East Brigham City, they found 19-year-old Keltsie Gerlach dead from multiple stab wounds. A 15-month-old baby was also in apartment asleep but was not in the same room where the crime occurred.
Police said the couple separated during the past year and didn’t have a history of domestic abuse.
Hadfield said investigators are still unsure of a motive and prosecutors will now start working with Gerlach’s public defender.
“What will happen is the public defender will get all of the stuff so far in the investigation, take a look at it,” said Hadfield. “We will meet with him, it is set for next week for a decision to prelim. We’ll meet with the public defender and decide whether we are going to have a preliminary hearing or whether he needs more time. That is about all I can tell you right now.”
Keltsie Gerlach’s grandfather was at the courtroom during Spencer’s appearance but didn’t wish to make a statement.
Gerlach is expected in court again on May 6.
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