A woman who hit her husband in the head with a baseball bat twice during a drunken fight has been charged with his murder, prosecutors said today.
Alice Tatum-Price, 51, is charged with first-degree murder in the slaying of her husband, James Tatum, who died June 22, more than a month after the May 12 fight in the couple’s Austin neighborhood home. Tatum-Price was ordered held in lieu of $1 million bail in a hearing today before Cook County Criminal Court Judge Donald Panarese, prosecutors said.
Tatum, 51, of the 5400 block of West Cortez Street, was declared dead just before 1 a.m. on June 22.
Tatum was drinking with his wife on May 12 when the two started arguing, police said. Tatum-Price, who was staying in Milwaukee, had a restraining order against Tatum and told police she shouldn’t have come to Chicago.
The two started arguing after having a couple of drinks, police said. At 10:41 p.m. on May 11, Tatum-Price called police because the couple were arguing and she “wanted to get away from her husband,” according to a court document. Tatum-Price called 911 again and tried to cancel the call, even though Tatum was angry with her and chasing her around the house, prosecutors said.
When Tatum sat down on a couch, Tatum-Price grabbed a wooden baseball bat from a corner of the rooom and said “come here you (expletive),” according to police and prosecutors. She hit him in the head twice, prosecutors said.
After hitting him, she put a pillow under his head and called 911. An ambulance took Tatum to Mount Sinai Hospital before police arrived and Tatum-Price told police what happened.
Tatum had bruises on his forearm from trying to defend himself from the bat, and Tatum-Price had no visible injuries except for a sprained finger, prosecutors said.
Investigators weren’t able to interview Tatum, but Tatum-Price was charged with attempted murder, aggravated domestic battery and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon the day after the fight. She was ordered held in lieu of $200,000 bail at that time, according to court records.
The medical examiner’s office determined Tatum died from cerebral injuries from blunt head trauma in a homicide, consistent with being hit in the head with a baseball bat.
Tatum-Price is scheduled to appear in Criminal Court Branch 66 again July 18.