In what he called "a stupid idea" intended to keep his wife from leaving him, William Dahlby said in court Tuesday that he threw a live electrical wire into his wife's bath the evening of May 9.

Dahlby said he was only trying to scare his wife with the wire he hid under a towel before his wife's bath. "At no time did I ever intend to kill or hurt my wife," he said. "I don't even know if that was possible."

The La Crosse man, who is on trial for attempted first-degree intentional homicide and intimidation of a victim, took the stand to challenge the state's assertions that he was trying to kill his wife to start a new life with another woman.