Thursday, June 28, 2012

Carpentersville, IL: Carpentersville police ID woman killed in murder-suicide

While Carpentersville police have confirmed the identity of a woman who was shot to death in a murder-suicide on Friday night, they aren’t releasing many new details about the case, which remains under investigation.

Meanwhile, police say it was very difficult to stop Tony Rodriguez, the Lake in the Hills man they are “confident” killed her, from turning the gun on himself, because there wasn’t enough time.

When officers arrived on the scene, Rodriguez, 39, met them outside with the gun already under his chin, officials said.

“And within seconds, he made his decision,” Police Chief Alan Popp said.

Nicole S. Brown, 38, of the 0-99 block of Alameda Drive, was gunned down on the 100 block of Pueblo Road on Friday night, just blocks away from her home, Cmdr. Timothy Bosshart said.

Brown, who has a son, a daughter and a granddaughter, was living in Texas before moving to Carpentersville about six months ago, said Julie Loewe, who had been close with both Brown and Rodriguez since their days at Dundee-Crown High School. Rodriguez had two sons of his own, she said.

Neighbors said Brown and Rodriguez had been dating for about six months, before breaking up a few weeks ago. Facebook posts indicate she ended the relationship.

“To the two men that keep on, I am not the cause of all of your problems,” Brown wrote in an entry dated the day she was killed. “One of you messed it up yourself and the other one treated me like crap. Why can’t you both just move on and just leave me alone?”

Loewe said Rodriguez had a history of depression and was extremely upset about the breakup.

“It’s been five days and I still don’t feel any better,” Rodriguez wrote in a post the day before the shootings. “I haven’t left the house except for medical or legal appointments and I don’t really have any interest in doing so. Maybe if I’m lucky I’ll have a heart attack or something.”

On Friday night, the pair met in his parked SUV to talk about the relationship, when she saw his gun and ran to Jesus Ignacio’s house on the 100 block of Pueblo Road for help, neighbors said.

But Rodriguez, according to Ignacio, found her and killed her outside his home, firing two bullets into her body.

Rodriguez then drove to Loewe’s house less than a mile away on the 1500 block of Amarillo Drive.

“He came to me,” Loewe said. “He was very sorry for what he did, but he couldn’t take it back.”

As police closed in on the home, Rodriguez saw officers from the window and went outside to meet them — with the gun already under his chin, Chief Popp said.

When someone approaches officers with a gun already at his head, their options to stop what followed next are limited, Deputy Chief Michael Kilbourne said.

“There’s not much realistically that can be done in a case like that, not with the time frame that it occurred in,” Kilbourne said, adding that police are still reviewing the case. “It certainly wasn’t your classic standoff where you’ve got time to discuss and take other options.”

The gun used in Brown’s killing is believed to be same one Rodriguez used to kill himself, which is one of the reasons police are confident he killed her, Popp said.

Travis Brown, Nicole Brown’s ex-husband, said she was a strong-willed woman who loved life. Her pastimes were fishing, boating, riding four-wheelers and cracking jokes. The pair met in the early 1990s when they were both in high school — she was his math tutor.

“I loved her the first time I saw her,” he said. “She was the most beautiful thing I saw. We were inseparable for a long time.”

The Kane County coroner is conducting both autopsies. Funeral arrangements for Brown are pending at Miller Funeral Home in West Dundee. Counseling is available for the two officers who witnessed the suicide, Kilbourne said.

Puyallup, WA: Couple dead in apparent murder-suicide near Puyallup

PUYALLUP, Wash. — Investigators are trying to determine who fired the gun in a Pierce County couple's apparent murder-suicide Wednesday evening.

Deputies responding to the 5000 block of 128th Street East near Puyallup found a 46-year-old woman and a 54-year-old man dead.

The two were boyfriend and girlfriend and had been together for a long time.

A neighbor said he heard a gunshot around 6:30 p.m.

"A minute later, (I) heard another one, another pop. I was, like, man that sure don't sound like fireworks. (I) guess it wasn't," he said.

Investigators said they don't know what led to the shooting.

Spring Grove, PA: UPDATE(2): Couple dead after a murder-suicide in Spring Grove

A man shot and killed his wife in North Codorus Township on Thursday, and then turned the gun on himself. When police arrived, they found the couple dead.

Police responded to the 1900 block of Stoverstown Road in North Codorus Township just before 5 p.m and found James Witte, 42, and his wife Holly Witte, 41 dead.

"Officers found two people deceased from obvious gunshot wounds," stated Southwestern Regional Police Chief Gregory Bean.

The incident began when a family member was called by James Witte at approx. 4:30 pm. He advised that he was at his home and that he was about to shoot his wife and then himself.

The telephone line was then disconnected. The family member went to the couples’ home and found the couple deceased.

Police say that the husband used a rifle in the shooting and believe the incident was the result of issues with the couple’s marriage.

"Any suicide is always a sad situation, you have questions that nobody can ever answer," stated Chief Deputy Coroner Claude Stabley.

The couple reportedly had several children and stepchildren, including a 7-year-old boy who lived with the family. A neighbor told us that before the shooting occurred, the mother took the boy out of the house.

"Him and his wife wasn't getting along,” explained neighbor Roger Shaw.

Neighbors stood in their yards and watched the taped off scene in disbelief.

"i couldn't believe that this happened, I just can't believe it," Shaw added.

The forensics team, coroner, and police department have been on scene since the incident occurred trying to put all the pieces together to find out exactly what happened.

National City, CA: Suicide Note Found in Father's Car Following Motel Murder-Suicide Source: Suicide Note Found in Father's Car Following Motel Murde

Detectives confirmed Thursday that they found a suicide note written by 38-year-old Maurillo Jaimes, a father who allegedly killed his two children before killing himself inside a National City motel room.
Upon searching Jaimes’ vehicle on Wednesday, detectives said they found a suicide note inside the car. The contents of the note were not released.
Jaimes, a National City resident, was found dead Tuesday morning along with his children, 11-year-old Maria Angelica Jaimes and 16-year-old Marco Antonio Jaimes, inside room #404 at The Paradise Motel on National City Blvd.
After receiving a call about a welfare check at their motel room, police entered the room and found the lifeless bodies of the two children on top of a bed with their father’s body nearby.
The children had fatal gunshot wounds, while the father was found with a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to Sgt. Julian Villagomez.
An employee at The Paradise Motel said a woman claiming to be the children's mother had knocked on the door of the room Tuesday where the bodies were found. The woman told the employee that the father had called her saying he was going to commit suicide. She then called police, who walked into the gruesome scene inside the room.
According to neighbors of the family, the mother and father of the children were in the process of separating at the time of the alleged murder-suicide.
On Thursday, officials said they are still investigating the incident as a murder-suicide.
Detectives also said they’ve been in contact with the family of the murder victims and a memorial fund has been established at Bank of America in honor of Marco Antonio and Maria Angelica.
For those who want to donate to the memorial fund, the account number is 164102931887. Any Bank of America branch will accept donations, which will go toward helping the family with funeral expenses.
Authorities said a viewing for the young victims will take place on Monday at El Camino Memorial at 607 National City Blvd. A mass for the children will be held Tuesday at 10 a.m. at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church and the burial will follow that same day at Cypress Hill Cemetery.

Tolleson, AZ: Police: Tolleson man accused of beating wife to death with toilet lid

A Tolleson man was arrested Saturday after reportedly beating his estranged wife to death with the lid of a toilet tank, officials said.

Edgardo Luis Claudio-Marrero, 48, was arrested after investigators arrived to his home in the 8700 block of West Washington Street and found the body of his wife, Sreymom Claudio, in the upstairs bathtub, police said.

Claudio-Marrero has been formally charged with second-degree murder, according to court documents.

According to documents, Sreymom Claudio heard that her husband had pawned some of her jewelry without her permission. She reportedly dropped off a friend at a restaurant to keep him away from her husband then drove to her husband’s house to confront him, documents said.

The friend waited to hear from Claudio for three hours before taking a taxi to Claudio-Marrero’s home. When the friend arrived, he waited in the taxi for 45 minutes to see if anyone would come out.

The friend told police Claudio-Marrero came out of the house and went to the passenger side of his van to search for something. Claudio-Marrero then went back into the house which prompted the friend to call police.

Police arrived and knocked at the door for 15 minutes before Claudio-Marrero came out through the garage. Officers saw that his hands had fresh cuts and were bleeding, according to the police report.

Officers said Claudio-Marrero admitted to pawning his wife’s jewelry and that he got into an argument with her when she arrived. He reportedly pushed and punched Claudio and then hit her with the lid from a toilet tank until it broke, police said.

Claudio-Marrero told police that his wife of five years moved in with his sister and that they were in the process of getting a divorce. He told police during the argument he got angry with his wife over photos he saw of her and another man on Facebook and “snapped.”

Claudio-Marrero’s bond was set for $750,000. He is scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing on July 5.

Pittsburgh, PA: Pa. man convicted of killing wife after TV dispute

PITTSBURGH (AP) — A western Pennsylvania man faces life in prison after being convicted of killing his wife following an argument over a Pittsburgh Penguins game two years ago.
Jurors in Allegheny County convicted 42-year-old Robert Abrams on Tuesday of first-degree murder, arson, and reckless endangerment.
Authorities said Abrams beat 44-year-old Jeanette Abrams with a hammer and stabbed her in their South Fayette Township home in April 2010, then set fire to the house and jumped out a window.
Police said the two had argued over the late hour of the Penguins' triple-overtime playoff loss to the Ottawa Senators in Game 5 of their first-round matchup.
Abrams faces a mandatory term of life in prison without possibility of parole. Common Pleas Judge Donald Machen said sentencing would be in 90 days.

Hays County, TX: Hays Co. man charged with killing wife

HAYS COUNTY, Texas -- Authorities in Hays County have arrested and charged a man with killing his wife.
The Hays County Sheriff's Office says John Fredrick Zedler, 55, is charged with killing Mildred Zedler, 55.
Authorities received a 911 medical assist emergency call just before 1 a.m. on June 27. When they arrived at the home in the 500 block of Palomino Road in Kyle, they found Mildred Zedler injured. She was taken to a local hospital where she was pronounced dead just before 1:30 a.m.
After their investigation and a forensic examination led them to believe her death was a homicide, investigators arrested John Zedler and charged him with murder.
Zedler is in custody at the Hays County Jail on a $435,000 bond.

Memphis, TN: Memphis man gets 6 years for killing wife

aying the defendant "got away with murder," a judge Thursday denied probation and sentenced a Memphis man to six years in prison for the shooting death of his wife two years ago.

Dameon Williams was charged with first-degree murder after putting a pistol to his wife's head and pulling the trigger, but a Criminal Court jury in May agreed with the defense that it was an accident.

He was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in the death of Latisha Williams, a verdict that Judge Paula Skahan found unsettling.

"You put a gun to her head and you killed her," the judge said to the defendant. "You were very fortunate the jury did not convict you of first-degree murder or second-degree murder. This is so horrible."

First-degree murder would have called for an automatic sentence of life in prison. Voluntary manslaughter calls for three to six years.

Williams, 30, has been in jail nearly two years, making him already eligible for parole.

"I just want to send my deepest apology to the family," he said from the witness stand. "I didn't mean to do it. I didn't know the gun was loaded. I never would intentionally hurt my wife."

The shooting occurred the morning of Aug. 20, 2010, at the couple's home at 2225 Riley Alley in Orange Mound.

The medical examiner said the 9mm pistol was pressed to Latisha Williams' head when fired and that the barrel's imprint was seared into her scalp.

In the trial, jurors heard a tape of Williams' 911 call in which he cries and emits high-pitched wails that he had just shot his wife.

"That 911 call got him voluntary manslaughter," said state prosecutor Missy Branham, who suggested probation for Williams so stringent conditions such as restitution might be attached. "There's no justification for ever putting a gun point-blank to someone's head."

Public defender Kamilah Turner argued that her client did not know the gun was loaded, that he had no motive to kill his wife and that he took immediate action after the shooting by calling 911 for help.

"There were no witnesses," she said, "but he did not try to run, hide or make up a story that someone else did this."

Latisha Williams, 35, worked for a security company and left five children by two previous marriages or relationships.

"When he goes to bed and when he wakes up in the morning he's going to see her face because he killed her for no reason," said the victim's father, Luis Victor, 65, who is raising the two youngest children, girls ages 9 and 11. "I'm not a youngster, but I will take care of them until I leave this earth."

ARTICLE: Longer Jail Time for Strangulation in VA

RICHMOND, Va. - A new law set to go into effect in Virginia on Sunday will make the act of strangulation or choking a felony - a more serious offense than the Class 1 assault-and-battery misdemeanor charge now on the books.

One advocate for the new law, Michael Ducette, commonwealth attorney for the city of Lynchburg, says strangulation is common in domestic- and intimate-partner violence. Ducette is convinced that the new law will make the crime easier to prosecute, with longer jail times for those who are convicted.

"Choking or strangulation, whatever you want to call it, is physiologically and psychologically very different than just a mere assault, in the sense that it is the ultimate act of control. Someone who is strangling or choking another person really, literally, has their life in his hands."

Under current law, a person convicted of strangling someone gets a $2,500 fine and up to 12 months in jail. The new law classifies strangulation as a "Felony 6," which means the possibility of one to five years in jail, in addition to the fine.
Mary Beth Pulsifer, community outreach coordinator for the Women's Resource Center in the New River Valley, says 60 percent of the domestic-violence victims that come through the shelter admit to being choked. She welcomes the tougher law.

"Because we do know that when strangulation is part of an assault, those are situations that are at higher risk for domestic-partner homicide, in the long run."

The new law also extends to people outside the household; it no longer is limited to a family member.

Pulsifer says victims of domestic or sexual violence can contact the Virginia Family Violence and Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-838-8238.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

West Columbia, SC: Maryland man accused of killing girlfriend in SC

WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Lexington County deputies say a Baltimore man shot and killed his live-in girlfriend as they drove to pick up their son who was staying with relatives in South Carolina.

Investigators said 22-year-old Genesis Pearson was not far from the West Columbia home where his 13-month-old son was staying when he shot 21-year-old Alishia Dorsey in the head around 1:45 a.m. Sunday.

Deputies say they haven't figured out why Pearson killed his live-in girlfriend.

Pearson was arrested at the scene of the shooting and has been charged with murder. He is being held in the Lexington County jail without bond, and it wasn't clear if he had an attorney.

New City, NY: Woman gets 15 years in NY killing, arson

NEW CITY, N.Y. (AP) — A woman has admitted in court that she killed her ex-boyfriend and then set fire to his suburban New York apartment.

The Rockland County district attorney's office says 24-year-old Jodyann Hemmings of Manhattan pleaded guilty Monday to manslaughter and arson.

The boyfriend, Jason Ognenoff (AHN'-yeh-nahf) was found dead in his Mount Ivy living room on Aug. 18, 2011, when firefighters arrived to put out a blaze. Prosecutors said Hemmings had struck him with a figurine and stabbed him with a steak knife.

She fled but was arrested six days later.

Hemmings was originally charged with murder but the charge was lowered after doctors found she had been suffering from extreme emotional disturbance. The district attorney said the plea bargain calls for a 15-year sentence.

Mt. Vernon, NY: Mount Vernon woman gets prison for killing boyfriend

A Mount Vernon woman who admitted in May to strangling her boyfriend to death after a vicious domestic argument was sentenced Tuesday to between 3½ and 4 years in state prison.

Tywana Kerr, 29, killed 43-year-old Anthony “Rickie” Lowery in March 2011. Lowery was found unresponsive on Kerr’s bed the night after the two — who were engaged in an on-again, off-again relationship — argued over whether Lowery would stay the night.

Kerr pleaded guilty May 2 in state Supreme Court in White Plains to manslaughter and strangulation charges. Tuesday’s sentence, handed down by Judge Richard A. Molea, was slightly less than the 4-year maximum Kerr could have received, though she will also be required to serve 5 years post-release supervision.

Clare Degnan, a lawyer for Kerr, could not be immediately reached for comment.

Kerr had previously told police that she had struggled with Lowery before he collapsed to the floor and she dragged his body onto the bed. But Lowery was still unresponsive the next morning, prompting Kerr to call police, who arrested her later that day.

A father of three, Lowery worked in construction and had dated Kerr for several months, though family members said at the time of his death that they hadn’t been aware of any domestic violence in their relationship.

Lowery had exited a drug rehabilitation center and was recently sober when he started dating Kerr, family members said.

Stokes County, NC: Stokes Co. woman charged with shooting, killing boyfriend

STOKES CO., N.C. — A woman was arrested after deputies said she shot and killed her boyfriend during a domestic disturbance Tuesday night in Walnut Cove.
Kelly Green Robertson, 48, allegedly killed Donnie Lee Tilley, 59, at the home they lived at together at 2548 Brook Cove Road around 6:45 p.m., said Stokes County Sheriff Mike Marshall.
Deputies said they found Tilley dead at the scene with an apparent gunshot wound. Robertson was not injured went to the Emergency Room for a medical condition, officials said.
Robertson was charged with murder and placed in the Stokes County Jail without bond. Her first court date is planned Wednesday.
Authorities said no children in the home at the time of the shooting. Deputies said they have no knowledge of previous domestic violence or disturbance reports coming from the home.
The investigation is ongoing. Deputies said Tilley’s autopsy is pending this week at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.
No other information was released.

Hurley, VA: Buchanan County, VA man convicted of 2nd degree murder

A Buchanan County, Virginia jury sentenced a man to 20 years in prison for the killing of his fiancĂ©’s brother.

Michael Harold Justus, 46, of Hurley, Va., was convicted last week of second-degree murder during a three-day trial. He was accused of shooting 37-year-old Donnie Wayne Harris in the head April 2, 2011, according to a written statement from the Buchanan County Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.

Sometime the night before Harris’ death, he, his sister, Wendy, and her fiancĂ©, Justus, started drinking, according to trial testimony, the statement said.

The three lived together, but after midnight, Wendy Harris called a friend to come get her because Justus was agitated, the statement said. She went into the yard to wait for her ride and her brother came to check on her, the statement said.

Then, Justus came outside and threatened Wendy Harris, raising his fist as though to hit her. Donnie Harris intervened, and he and Justus fought their way back into the house. There, Harris pinned Justus to the ground and started punching him, the statement said. Wendy Harris broke up the fight and called 911 about Justus’ violent threats.

According to evidence shown at the trial, Justus went into his room sometime after the fight ended, got his 9mm pistol, and pointed it at Donnie Harris’ forehead.

A single shot dropped Harris to the ground. Autopsy results showed Harris died of a single gunshot wound to the head, fired from a 9mm pistol believed to be between two and 18 inches away, the statement said.

“Mr. Justus claimed that he had acted on self-defense, but the evidence clearly and convincingly showed otherwise,” said Gerald Arrington, the county’s Commonwealth’s Attorney. “We hope this result will bring peace and closure to the Harris family.”

Astoria, NY: Woman, 30, Found Dead in Astoria Apartment

Police are searching for the boyfriend of a 30-year-old woman who was found dead with severe head injuries in an Astoria apartment., sources said Wednesday.

Police found the body of Danielle Thomas around 7:30 p.m. Tuesday while responding to a 911 call. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

A neighbor said Thomas had told her she had an abusive boyfriend. The neighbor, who has a background in domestic violence counseling, told NBC 4 New York that she urged Thomas to stay away from him.

"I did encourage her to change her phone number and stay away from social media, try not to be in contact with him at all," the neighbor said. "I can't believe [this] happened."

Neighbors said Thomas moved into a third-floor apartment in the building about four months ago.

Law-enforcement sources said there was a history of incidents between Thomas and her boyfriend (UPDATE - later identified as Jason Bohn), who was recently arrested for allegedly assaulting her. Thomas told police he punched her in the face and back and told her, "It's war. I'm going to dedicate my life to hunting you down like a dog in the streets. I am going to make your life impossible," according to a criminal complaint.

A judge issued an order of protection against him on June 8.

A medical examiner will determine the cause of death.

Indio, CA: Victim Killed in Indio had Restraining Order

INDIO- The woman who was killed in Indio on Monday filled a restraining order against the man police say shot and killed her Monday afternoon.

Ana Maria Gonzalez and Karl Watson were not married, but court papers reveal a complicated relationship between the two with a history of domestic violence.

"He was obssessed with her, he was losing control, the most dangerous time for a woman is when she is exiting a relatationship," said Lynn Moriarty, Executive Director for Shelter from the Storm, a domestic abuse non-profit.

A judge granted Gonzalez a restraining order against Watson in Feburary because of reported
domestic violence, to protect gonzalez and two family members. The restraining order also barred Watson from possessing a gun and obtaining Gonzalez' address.

"Women are dying everyday in the country because some of those pieces of papers don't work," said Moriarty.

Police say Karl Watson shot and killed Gonzalez as she pulled up to her parking space at Las Brisas apartments in Indio. When a police officer arrived on scene investigators say Watson attacked and shot at the officer. Another officer shot Watson dead.

Jessica Flores, KMIR6 News.

To contact Shelter from the Storm Hotline for Domestic Violence: 760-328-SAFE.

Orinda, CA: Police: Orinda man killed his girlfriend in domestic dispute

ORINDA -- Police say a 62-year-old man with a history of domestic violence killed his longtime girlfriend Tuesday and then ran to a neighbor's house to summon police, dropping the weapon in a yard between the two homes.

The death of the 51-year-old woman(Evangeline Cumbe Devera), whose name has not been released pending notification of her family, is the first killing in the suburban city of Orinda in a decade. Police would not say how she was killed, but officers found her on the kitchen floor not long after she was slain, said Orinda police Chief Jeff Jennings. The suspect was arrested without incident at the scene, Jennings said.

Police also declined to release the type of weapon that was used.

The name of the man has not been released, but property records show the sprawling ranch-style home in the 600 block of Moraga Way, three miles from Orinda Village, is owned by James Collin, 62.

Jennings said the couple had a "fight" Tuesday sometime before the call came into police at 12:18 p.m. Once in custody, the suspect made "spontaneous statements" that he "killed her," Jennings said.

Police said the suspect went to his 90-year-old neighbor's home and told the man a murder had occurred.

"The (neighbor) was confused," Jennings said. "But there was a voice behind him (on the phone) giving him more information. (Dispatchers) heard in the background, 'It's at my house.'"
Jennings said the voice in the background was that of the suspect.

When police arrived, officers found the suspect outside the neighbor's home and the woman dead inside the house the two shared. No one else was in the home and no one else was injured, police said. The neighbor was transported to John Muir Medical Center for a medical evaluation, police said.

Asked about the suspect's demeanor and whether he had blood on him when he was arrested, Jennings said he was "lucid and calm" and "had stuff on him that looked like he was in a tussle." He declined to elaborate.

Jennings also said the suspect has "a history of domestic violence."

"We've been called to this house before," he said.

The couple had been living together for 10 years, police said.

Steve Stahle, who has rented the home next door to the couple for two years, said the couple often squabbled.

"They fought all the time," he said. "It seemed like it was something that could escalate."
Stahle described the suspect as a "nice guy, and a nice neighbor," one that seemed to play peacemaker more than the woman. "Most of the time, it was her ranting at him," Stahle said.

"It's a real tragedy. They just were never able to get along. It's just a really sad thing."

Another neighbor, Whitney Quin, said dogs in the area were "going crazy" about 11 a.m. Tuesday, though she did not hear any screaming or fighting coming from the couple's home.

Quin said she had never spoken to the couple. She added that in the last few weeks she had noticed a lot of people and vehicles coming and going from the home. There were three cars and a truck parked in the circular driveway and on the brown grass Tuesday afternoon.

The Orinda Police Department contracts with the Contra Costa County's Sheriff's Office, and detectives with that agency are handling the investigation, spokesman Jimmy Lee said.

Homicides are rare in Orinda, a quiet and affluent community just east of the Caldecott Tunnel. The last slaying was in 2002, when Susan Polk fatally stabbed her 70-year-old husband, Felix. Polk was convicted of murder in 2006.

Hilton Head, SC: Woman, 84, killed in Hilton Head retirement community; husband suspected of murder, attempted suicide

The Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the murder of an 84-year old woman and the possible attempted suicide of her 90-year-old husband at their home Sunday night at a retirement community on Hilton Head Island. Deputies suspect the husband in the killing, according to a news release.
At about 8 p.m., deputies responded to the Seabrook in reference to a caregiver discovering two of her clients in need of medical attention. The caregiver said she had gone, as regularly scheduled, to attend to 84-year-old Page Cross and her husband, 90-year-old John Cross.

Upon arrival, she found a note on the door turning away any visitors. Once inside, she found a second note advising her to call 911. At that time, she located Page Cross lying in a bed with multiple lacerations. In a second bedroom, she found John Cross, lying on the floor with a gunshot wound and multiple lacerations.

Page Cross was pronounced dead at the scene. John Cross was initially taken to Hilton Head Hospital and has since been transported to Savannah for continued treatment.

It is suspected that the incident may have been a murder-attempted suicide by John Cross; however, the investigation continues with autopsy results pending, the Sheriff's Office said. Further details will be released as they become available.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Lake Tahoe, NV: Murder-suicide being investigated by South Lake Tahoe authorities

A man found dead and hanging from a tree Friday in an apparent suicide may have been involved in a homicide being investigated since Wednesday, South Lake Tahoe authorities report.
On Wednesday, June 20, around 2:30pm South Lake Tahoe Police Officers responded to the Lone Pine Lodge in South Lake Tahoe to investigate a report of a suspicious circumstance. Management reported hearing a child crying from one of the rooms and became concerned. Officers entered the room and located a deceased woman on the bed and her crying 2 year old child. The woman has been identified as 43 year old Lyra Fisher-Bomediano from South Lake Tahoe. There was no one else in the room. Officers did not observe any obvious signs of what may have caused the woman’s death. The child was uninjured and is in the care of Child Protective Services. An autopsy was performed on Lyra Fisher on Friday, and her death appears to be a homicide.
Since June 20th Police have been looking for Lyra’s husband, Aaron Fisher, 41, for questioning concerning the circumstances surrounding his wife’s death. It was reported to police Aaron recently moved back to South Lake Tahoe from Hawaii about one week ago. Aaron is reported to be the father of the two year old child found with Lyra.
On June 22 at about 1:25pm South Lake Tahoe Police responded to the forested area behind Raley’s (Heavenly Village Way). Police arrived and located a deceased male subject hanging from a tree. The male was located just outside the City limits in El Dorado County. The deceased male was identified as Aaron Fisher. The preliminary investigation shows Aaron’s death was likely a suicide.
This case is still under investigation by the South Lake Tahoe Police Department.

Newton, IN: Murder-suicide eyed in Newton

A married couple and their dog are dead following a Newton County murder-suicide that took place Friday.

Marv Simon of 240 N. Indiana 55 and his wife, Mindy S. Simon, of 394 N. Indiana 55 were found dead in their homes resulting from gunshot wounds to the head.

The couple was married but lived in separate residences on the same property, according to Newton County Coroner Scott McCord.

According to investigative reports, Marv Simon went to the residence of his wife and shot her in the head. He then went to his residence where he shot his dog and then himself.

The motive is unclear, McCord said, but investigators do believe Marv Simon was in financial trouble and had become depressed.

McCord, along with deputies from the Newton County Sheriff’s Office and emergency services responded, about 3:37 p.m. Friday to a report of a possible suicide.

At the time, witnesses reported hearing a number of gunshots.

Police found Marv Simon and the dog and then moved to the adjacent home where they found Mindy Simon.

Autopsies conducted at noon Saturday at the Tippecanoe County Morgue confirming that the couple and their dog each died of gunshot wounds.

Next of kin was notified Saturday but McCord said the incident remains under investigation and toxicology reports are pending.

Harris County, TX: Husband and wife fatally shot in possible murder-suicide

A man and his wife were fatally shot at a home in west Harris County early Monday morning, in what deputies say is a possible murder-suicide.

The shooting happened about 6:30 a.m. at the residence in the 7300 block of River Pines near Village Lake Drive, according to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies said the man and woman, whose names have not been released, were rushed to a nearby hospitals, where they were pronounced dead.

Deputies were dispatched to the home on a call about an emergency shooting. When they arrived, they had to force their way into the house, said Sgt. Felipe Rivera, a Harris County homicide investigator.

Rivera said deputies found the woman wounded, lying on the living room floor. The man was found wounded in a downstairs bedroom. A handgun was found in the bedroom, as well. Deputies said the woman called 911 to report the shooting, saying she had been shot.

There were no signs of forced entry in the home. Deputies were still in the process of investigating the scene, but it appears that the shooting could be a possible murder-suicide, Rivera said.

Neighbors in the area said the shooting was unusual for their neighborhood. They said it’s a quiet residential area.

“I’m surprised,” said 22-year-old Poleth Turcios, who lives nearby. “You never expect something like this.”

Huntington, MA: Massachusetts State Police: Jeb Daly, boyfriend of missing woman Jessica Dana, has been arrested

HUNTINGTON — Jeb Daly, the boyfriend of missing Huntington woman Jessica Dana, was arrested Sunday night in connection with Dana's disappearance over the weekend, Massachusetts State Police Trooper Donny Wilmot said.

Daly, 36, was taken into custody by state police at about 9 p.m. Sunday in Huntington. He is expected to be arraigned Monday morning in Northampton District Court on charges of improper disposal of a body and misleading the authorities, according to Mary Carey, a spokeswoman for Northwestern District Attorney David E. Sullivan.

Authorities on Sunday night converged on Rocky Brook Drive, the street where Dana, 24, lived with her three young children. Carey confirmed that state police detectives assigned to Sullivan's office were investigating a suspicious death, but police have not yet publicly identified the body. However, Dana's family and friends are grieving her death on Facebook.

"My beautiful cousin, may u [sic] rest in peace and know ur [sic] babies will always be safe," Heather Maxwell wrote in a post Monday. Another cousin, Kaysie Maxwell, said she could not believe her cousin "got her life taken" over an argument. "It's so hard for us right now, but we're all gonna [sic] work together to make sure her kids grow up healthy and happy like Jess would want," she wrote. "Rest in peace my beautiful cousin."

Family and friends posted images of Dana on Facebook, appealing to anyone with information about her whereabouts. The mother was last seen late Friday; a search for her was launched early Saturday.

By Sunday evening, police confirmed that a body had been found near Dana's home on Rocky Brook Drive. Troopers, Huntington police and other law enforcement officials flocked to the street, which is off Route 112 just south of Gardner State Park.

The search for Dana quickly became a manhunt for Daly, according to 22News, which reported that area residents were told by authorities to stay inside their homes. That information could not immediately be confirmed with police.

It was unclear if Daly lived with Dana on Rocky Brook Drive. Daly, in a June 19 Facebook post, declared that he was "all done" having kids.

More information will be posted on MassLive as it becomes available.

Sacramento County, CA: Search in Folsom finds body, possibly suspect in wife's killing

A four-hour manhunt that closed a Folsom park Sunday ended with police finding a dead man believed to be a suspect in a homicide case in Mariposa County.
Police said they found the unidentified male near a trail in the Negro Bar section of the Folsom Lake State Recreation Area. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Police didn't release any information about cause of death.

While officers said they weren't yet sure, the man was believed to be a suspect in the death of a Sacramento County woman found two days earlier in Mariposa County.

Mariposa sheriff's officials identified the woman as Tiffany J. Russell, 21. Her brother said she lived in Orangevale.
The bizarre case began unfolding Sunday morning. State park rangers found an empty Ford Ranger pickup truck in the parking lot of Sudwerk Riverside Restaurant, overlooking Negro Bar.
A check of the license plate tied the truck to the Mariposa homicide, police said. Witnesses told police the driver had headed for Negro Bar.
Believing he was armed, police cleared the area as a Folsom SWAT team and police dogs, assisted by Sacramento County sheriff's deputies, scoured the park for the man.
"They thought he had gone down to the river to kill himself," said restaurant general manager Tara Coleman.

The search kept the park closed for about four hours. The restaurant delayed its opening, Coleman said.
"We just watched the SWAT team search for him from our patio," she said.
Sgt. Jason Browning, spokesman for Folsom police, said the body was discovered around noon.
"He was basically down; it appeared he was deceased," Browning said.
Browning said a gun was found beneath the man's body.
Mariposa sheriff's deputies said Tiffany Russell's body was found Friday in a rural stretch of the Lake Don Pedro Subdivision, a vast residential area. They're treating her death as a homicide.
The location was about two miles from the boyhood home of Tiffany's husband, Sean Russell, according to Tiffany's brother Jason Bailey. Bailey said his family has been trying to contact Sean since learning of Tiffany's death.
He said Tiffany and Sean had lived in Orangevale for about five months. Tiffany was just about to start a new job in sales and "was really excited about it," Bailey said.
But he said his sister's marriage was difficult, and he and his family tried to persuade her to move back to her hometown of Merced "and start a new life." She refused.

Tupelo, MS: Miss. woman kills man by running over him in truck

TUPELO, Miss. (AP) - A Marshall County woman is in jail after she killed her boyfriend by running him over with a pickup truck.

Marshall County Sheriff Kenny Dickerson says that Karen Farr is being held after running over Ronnie Perry, 49, in a Ford Ranger pickup truck. The incident happened on U.S. 72 near the Tennessee state line.

Dickerson says Perry left a motel where the couple was staying after an argument Friday and walked east on the highway. Farr followed in the truck, saw Perry and swerved to hit him, the sheriff says. Farr hit another vehicle after running over Perry and wrecked the truck. The other driver was uninjured, State Trooper Joe Miller said. Farr walked back to the motel, where she was arrested.

Beverly Hills, CA: Couple Found Dead in Murder-Suicide at Beverly Hilton On Eve of Daytime Emmys

An elderly man and woman were found fatally shot in an apparent murder-suicide at the Beverly Hilton last night, police said.
The Beverly Hills shooting was reported around 10:50 pm last night and the coroner's picked up the bodies early this morning, City News Service reported. Beverly Hills Lt. Mark Rosen told the news agency, "Homicide investigators believe that they are victims of an apparent murder-suicide."
Police described the victims as "elderly" but they aren't saying who shot who, according to the Associated Press.
The 39th Annual Daytime Emmys are scheduled to be held there later today. It wasn't clear if the couple had any connection to the event or if the deaths would affect the event in any way.
Homicides are, of course, exceptionally rare in Beverly Hills. Before last night's shootings, there were just six homicides in the city since 2008, the AP reported. The Beverly Hilton has seen a lot of action this year: Whitney Houston's body was found submerged in a bathtub in the hotel earlier this year.

ARTICLE: Panel OKs domestic violence bill named for slain local woman

TRENTON — A bill crafted after the 2009 slaying of a Toms River woman cleared its first hurdle this week.

Known as “Lisa’s Law,” the legislation is named for Litizia “Lisa” Zindell, who was 30 at the time she was killed. It allows for the electronic monitoring of defendants in domestic violence cases.

Zindell was killed by her ex-fiance the day after his release from jail, despite several restraining order violations.

At the time of her death, the Toms River resident worked as a state Division of Youth and Family Services social worker and was pursuing a second master’s degree.

The Assembly Appropriations Committee approved the bill Monday.

“Lisa Zindell’s tragic loss exposed a weakness in our laws for protecting victims from repeated domestic violence,” said the bill’s primary sponsor, Assemblyman Ronald Dancer, R-Ocean. “Lisa understood the dangers of domestic violence and did everything she could to protect herself, but our laws are not strong enough to keep people safe from depraved abusers who are likely to continue their physical abuse.”

A mirror bill awaits Senate Judiciary Committee approval.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Gallatin County, KY: Police Says Couple in Murder-Suicide Were Going Through Separation

Three children are without their parents, after a double shooting police believe is a tragic murder-suicide. Police found a husband and wife dead in their home on Wanda Court near Verona late Wednesday morning. Their children were outside when the shots rang out.

Local 12's Dan Spehler spoke with neighbors who consoled those children afterwards.

Police believe their father, 37 year old Michael Turner, was the one who pulled the trigger. First troopers say he shot his 35-year old wife, April Turner, then turned the gun on himself and took his own life. "Its tragic the kids were good kids they were over here playing with mine it's just a shame to see the kids basically homeless now."

Neighbor John Six came home not long after it happened. "Saw the oldest one running up the street and called her over here, consoled her, the rest of kids stayed here until all the police got to talk to them."

Troopers say the kids were all outside when their father Michael Turner shot their mother April, then turned the gun on himself. "Gallatin County dispatch received a 911 call there had been a shooting call, it was actually from one of the children who was outside."

Six says, "I just hope they're ok. It's just a shame. They got a long road ahead of them and I hope they can stick together and work thru this it's crazy."

Off camera, friends and other neighbors told us the couple had been going thru a separation and that Michael was having problems with alcohol. "Kentucky State Police had a call in May about a marital property dispute over a vehicle, other than that, we've been talking to neighbors they say there's been a past history of marital problems."

Six recalls, "I've known these guys. I know they've had some problems but I never thought it'd lead to this."

Autopsies will be conducted on the husband and wife to try and verify what police believe took place here. But at this point they say the preliminary investigation shows it was Turner who shot his wife, then himself.

Neighbors say April Turner's family is from out of state, and on their way to be with the children. Social Service workers will watch the children, who range in age from 8 years to 14 years, until then. They're also being interviewed by State Police.

Fontana, CA: Upland man who killed wife with machete is sentenced to 26 years to life in state prison

FONTANA -- An Upland man has been sentenced to more than two decades in state prison for killing his estranged wife with a machete nearly three years ago.
Horacio Gonzalez Jr., 42, received his sentence of 26 years to life - with the possibility of parole - Thursday inside a full courtroom at Fontana Superior Court. The term was handed out after friends and family members of the victim read heart-felt letters concerning their loved one.
Last month, Horacio Gonzalez Jr. was found guilty of murder for chasing down 37-year-old Griselda Gonzalez to the rear of the Fontana beauty salon where she worked and attacking her with a machete on July 22, 2009.
He struck her in the head at least twice with the weapon and she was pronounced dead at the scene. Afterward, Horacio Gonzalez Jr. bought bleach and drank it, in what appeared to be a suicide attempt.
Prior to the attack, Griselda Gonzalez had filed a restraining order against her estranged husband. The couple were having problems and had been separated for about six months.
"I'm very happy with the sentencing," said Jack Dioses, owner of Mimi's Hair Designs in the 17700 block of Taylor Avenue.
Griselda Gonzalez had worked for Dioses at the salon for 17 years.
"She was like a daughter to me and my late wife," he said.
Dioses said the prison term for Horacio Gonzalez Jr. has given him some type of closure.
"It will never replace what he did," Dioses said.

"But justice was served."

Elmhurst, NY: Elmhurst man killed wife: DA

An Elmhurst man was arraigned Friday on charges of murdering his estranged wife last week in the apartment complex where they once shared a flat, according to the criminal complaint filed by the Queens district attorney’s office.

Maximiliano Lozada, 34, allegedly stabbed his wife, Luz Paulino, 33, multiple times at around 8:25 p.m. June 11 in a seventh-floor apartment he rented, at 40-05 Hampton St. in Elmhurst, the complaint said.

After being found by police surrounded by blood and a large broken kitchen knife, Paulino was taken to Elmhurst Hospital Center, where she ended up dying at 9:37 p.m. from the multiple stab wounds she had received, the complaint said.

Following a trail of blood, police later found Lozada at his mother’s home in an apartment complex, at 40-50 Denman St. in Elmhurst, which is about five blocks away, the complaint said. Lozada had a laceration on his right index finger, bruises on his forearms and injuries on his chest, the complaint said. He was arrested last Thursday and charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon, the complaint said.

Lozada was remanded without bail, the Queens district attorney’s office said.

The complaint said Paulino and Lozada had once lived in a fifth-floor apartment at 40-05 Hampton St. but had separated several months ago, with Paulino moving to the Bronx. Some witnesses had told police they had heard numerous arguments coming from Lozada’s apartment, the complaint said.

One neighbor said the couple had a 7-year-old son, who had been living with his grandmother in Santo Domingo.

Before and after the attack, surveillance footage allegedly showed Lozada entering and leaving the Hampton Street apartment complex, the complaint said.

An officer on the scene June 12 and neighbors said Lozada went across the street and bought a beer at the Jazmina Grocery shortly after the slaying.

Blood was found in Lozada’s apartment, an elevator in the complex and Lozada’s mother’s home, the complaint said.

Lozada’s name was on an employee list at La Casa Del Pollo Peruano II, on Roosevelt Avenue near 82nd Street. Neighbors said he worked there as a cashier.

His next court date is July 27, the DA said.

Riverside, CA: Prosecutor: Man killed wife, daughter after paternity test

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – A Southern California man strangled his wife and bludgeoned his 6-year-old daughter to death after a paternity test showed the girl was not his biological child, prosecutors said.
Deputy District Attorney John Aki told a Riverside courtroom Thursday that Michael Barbar, 54, of Perris received the test results eight days before strangling his wife and smashing the girl's head into a bedpost repeatedly until her skull was crushed in 2009.
Barbar was then planning to kill his wife's lover in Texas and flee to Lebanon but was stopped by police in New Mexico, the Press-Enterprise reported.
Eric Keen, Barbar's defense attorney, said the killings of 43-year-old Maysam Barbar and 6-year-old Tamara were not planned but carried out in an uncontrollable rage. He asked jurors to find his client guilty of involuntary manslaughter.
The trial is expected to resume Monday.
On Thursday, Barbar's 13-year-old daughter Tarah testified that heard her younger sister's cries and her father marching up and down the stairs carrying garbage bags as she lay in bed the night of the killings. The next morning, she found her sister's bed covered in blood and her mother's room locked, she said.
Prosecutors said Barbar pulled his younger daughter out of school for a paternity test after discovering his wife had been having several affairs, including one where she met a lover in Texas. He received the results on Nov. 6, 2009, and committed the murders eight days later, prosecutors said.

Gainesville, FL: Florida man accused of throwing, killing parrot during fight with girlfriend

GAINESVILLE, Florida — Gainesville police say a 29-year-old man slammed his 5-month-old parrot to the floor during an argument with his girlfriend.

The Gainesville Sun reports that Luis Enrique Quinones told police he threw the parrot so he wouldn't hit his girlfriend. Police arrested Quinones and his girlfriend, Myres Luanny Thomas, 29, on Thursday.

Police say Quinones was upset after Thomas told him she had a beer at work. As they argued, Thomas told him to leave and started throwing his stuff out the door.

That's when police say Quinones grabbed the parrot from its cage and slammed it into the tile floor. The parrot died immediately. Thomas punched Quinones in the face and threw a vase at him.

Quinones was charged with animal cruelty, Thomas with assault and battery.

Rio Linda, CA: Woman victim in Rio Linda murder suicide identified

RIO LINDA, CA - The woman allegedly killed by her boyfriend at their Rio LInda home Thursday night has been identified as 54-year-old Darrilynn Groth.

Alfonso Montoya, her next door neighbor on Altoona Way described her as a friendly, outgoing person.

"She had a garden in her backyard," Montoya said, "she'd give me some vegetables...yeh, we got along real good. She was a real nice lady. Friendly."

Montoya had helped the couple move in back in 1996. He said her boyfriend had been depressed recently because of the death of his mother.

"Sometimes I see he's in a good mood, sometimes he's (not) in a really good mood...last time I saw him was a couple of days ago. What happened last night, I can't believe it."

Sacramento County sheriff's deputies responded to the 6000 block of Altoona Court in Rio Linda around 6 p.m. Thursday to find a woman dead from a gunshot wound, Deputy Jason Ramos said.

Deputies said the suspect, a man in his 50's, then fled to a home on the 1500 block of Los Molinos Way in Arden. Deputies surrounded the home and used a robot and explosives to make entry into the home.

After a nearly 4-hour standoff, Ramos said the suspect was found dead inside with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

"We were able to determine there was a male who appears to be deceased in his 50's inside the residence. Based on the preliminary information we have we believe that this was the individual responsible for the homicide up in Rio Linda," Ramos said.

Investigators said it was not immediately clear what had precipitated the murder-suicide. The name of the man has not yet been released. The investigation is continuing.

Chester, SC: Chester man accused of killing girlfriend's unborn child

CHESTER, S.C. (AP) -- A Chester man in jail on charges that he stabbed his pregnant girlfriend has now been charged with the death of the unborn boy.
The Herald of Rock Hill reported 39-year-old Aris Nichols was charged Wednesday with the death of an unborn child during a violent crime.

Nichols faces up to 30 years in prison if he is convicted.

Police say 21-year-old Brittany Jordan was several months pregnant when she was stabbed April 26 in the couple's home just west of Chester. Their unborn son , did not survive.

Prosecutor Doug Barfield says the delay in the charge was prompted by the need to talk with the medical personnel who treated Jordan.

Barfield says the law does not require proof that the suspect intended to kill the unborn child.

Las Vegas, NV: Woman Arrested in Shooting of Ex-Boyfriend

LAS VEGAS – Metro Police arrested a 24-year-old woman after a man was found bleeding from his chest outside her home in the 5500 block of Avenida Vaquero, near W. Cheyenne Avenue and Michael Way.

Jesmin Sandoval, who lives at the home, told officers she shot her ex-boyfriend, Jason Vongundy, 37, in self-defense, according to her arrest report.

In the report, she told officers that she had broken up with Vongundy and he had come over to her house to retrieve his belongings. The two began to argue and when she went back into the house, he started to yell at her through a window, threatening to kill her, the report said.

She said she went outside to avoid waking children in the house, and when he came towards her, she grabbed a gun from his belongings, the report said.

Sandoval told officers that Vongundy pointed something at her and she feared for her life when she shot him.

At first she told officers she couldn't remember where she put the gun, and that she immediately called 911 for help, the report said. After some questioning, officers learned she had thrown the gun behind the house into an alley 100 yards away.

Vongundy was taken to University Medical Center with a gunshot to his chest.

Officers said the bullet's path did not match her story, the report said, and because of this, arrested Sandoval for attempted murder with a deadly weapon.

Colquitt County, GA: Colquitt Co. man killed in his bed

A Moultrie woman is charged with shooting and killing her longtime live in boyfriend.

43-year old Gina Thompson is charged with murdering 54-year old Johnny Crawford. Officials say the couple had a history of domestic disputes, and they say the suspect tried to cover up the crime.

43 year old Gina Thompson called 911 early this morning, claiming to be the victim of a crime.

"The Colquitt County Sheriffs Office 911 center got a call about 12:30 this morning that there was a burglary in process and someone had been shot," says Steve Turner, GBI Special Agent In Charge.

But when deputies arrived at the home at 1445 South U.S. 319, they weren't buying her story.

"They found Gina Thompson, at the residence, she was claiming that she had been shot, and Johnny Crawford was actually shot at the residence, and he was already deceased," says Turner.

Crawford's body was found lying in bed with multiple gun shot wounds to the torso and shoulder. He was pronounced dead at the scene. And Thompson's story of a home invader didn't hold up.

Officials say she staged a break in by shattering the glass on the back door.

"That is where the supposed break in was, it really wasn't a home invasion, she tried to make it look like a home invasion," says Turner.

Officials say Thompson went to great lengths to make her story plausible, even turning the gun on herself.

"She wasn't actually shot, a bullet came very close to her arm, she got more gun powder than bullet, the bullet didn't really hit her," says Turner.

43 year old Gina Thompson is charged with murder for shooting and killing her live-in boyfriend of 20 years, 54 year old Johnny Crawford. Thompson is being held in the Colquitt County jail.

Officials are not sure exactly what led to the shooting. Gina Thompson is charged with murder and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime.

Summit County, OH: Ex-boyfriend charged with murder of Jackson Township woman

A woman working as a pizza delivery driver in Summit County was lured to a secluded business where police believe her former boyfriend ambushed and killed her Thursday.

Chad Cobb, 30, of Rittman, is being held in the Summit County Jail on charges of aggravated murder and kidnapping. He was being held under a $1.5 million bond.

Cobb is accused of killing Ashley Biggs, 25, whom co-workers reported as missing early Thursday morning from a Green pizza shop. Her body was found hours later in Chippewa Township. An autopsy Friday showed she was beaten and then strangled to death.

Police say Cobb, who owned a cable installation company worker, used of four-foot long zip tie to strangle Biggs.

The two are parents of a 6-year-old daughter and were involved in a contentious custody dispute, police said. The dispute continued through Thursday morning with the most recent court filing.

Biggs’ attorney acknowledged that the dispute was contentious.

“Ashley loved her daughter and she was fighting to get custody of her,” said Charles Olminsky Jr., Biggs’ domestic relations court attorney. He declined further comment.

New Franklin Police Chief Dan Davidson said Biggs, a driver for Domino’s on South Main Street, was sent to a West Turkeyfoot Lake Road business in New Franklin late Wednesday or early Thursday morning to deliver a pizza.

The business was closed and Davidson said he believes the delivery was ruse to get Biggs to the site. It was there that police believe Cobb attacked her, striking her on the head.

Co-workers reported Biggs missing about 12:45 a.m. Thursday and filed a missing person’s report. Police and Summit County sheriff’s deputies went to the West Turkeyfoot Lake Road one-story office building and found evidence of a struggle, Davidson said.

“We checked the area and we had found there had been a struggle there of some sort because we found large amounts of blood on the pavement outside the business,” Davidson said.

Police learned from Biggs’ co-workers that she was having a dispute with Cobb over child custody, and officers later went to a nearby relative’s home of the man, where Cobb was found hiding in a patch of woods.

He was taken into custody for questioning and later charged.

Later that morning, Wayne County sheriff’s deputies found Biggs’ car and her body. Police believe she was killed in Summit County and her body was moved to Chippewa Township.

Davidson said Cobb is not speaking with detectives.

“He lawyered up,” he said.

“Chad is a family oriented guy who loves his children very much,” said defense attorney Adam Van Ho. He declined further comment until he can review the case evidence.

Cobb’s domestic court attorney, Beth Judge of Cleveland, declined comment.

Workers at the pizza shop had no comment Friday morning. Family members could not be reached. Biggs lived with a co-worker in Jackson Township. No one answered the door Friday afternoon.

Davidson said it appears Cobb drove Biggs’ car to Chippewa and returned to Summit County. His department’s investigation is ongoing, and others might be charged, he said.

Jail records this week show Biggs’ daughter lived with Cobb, his three other children and his wife, Erika, in a Mount Eaton Road home in Rittman. Deputies noted he was cooperative during booking Thursday night, but cried when talking about his children.

Cobb’s family members could not be reached.

Court records show an original custody action was filed in 2007 and Cobb was named residential parent that same year.

All appeared to be amicable in the custody case and no motions were filed for more than four years until events turned contentious between Cobb and Biggs in October and continued through this month.

Different allegations, including contempt of court claims, were filed monthly against each other, court records show. For example, Biggs filed an affidavit alleging that Cobb changed his phone number and was in violation of custody orders.

This month, Cobb filed papers contending that Biggs was interfering with his planned vacation with his daughter. He also recently claimed Biggs was attempting to alienate his daughter from him and that Biggs blocked the girl’s ability to contact him.

The father further alleged that Biggs made false claims to sheriff’s deputies that he had taken the girl to Florida.

As recently as Thursday morning, Cobb’s attorney filed a subpoena to the Northeast Ohio Behavioral Health facility seeking medical and psychological records for his daughter.

The daughter is in custody of Stark County Department of Job and Family Services.

Phil Trexler can be reached at 330-996-3717 or

Knox County, TN: Couple found shot in West Knox apartment died in murder/suicide

The Knox County Sheriff's Office has concluded that the couple found shot in their West Knox County apartment this week died in a murder/suicide.

The son of Cindy Jo Flanary, 48, found the bodies of his mother and her longtime boyfriend, Alan Ollis, on Wednesday. They lived in the Heritage Lake Apartments, off Grove Lake Way, just off Westland Drive and Pellissippi Parkway.

After a preliminary autopsy, the medical examiner believes Ollis shot Flanary once in the head, then turned the gun on himself. Both were found dead in the bathroom. There were no signs of a struggle.

The autopsy also revealed that the couple had likely been dead since late Sunday night or early Monday morning.

Holmes County, FL: Couple Found Dead in Holmes County Home

Holmes County, Fla. -
Today, June 21, 2012 Holmes County dispatch received a 911 call at approximately 9:02 a.m. indicating that a man had shot his wife.

Holmes County Sheriff's Deputies responded to the residence at 2702 Tup McWaters Road and discovered a Holmes County couple dead inside their home due to apparent gunshot wounds.

Investigators also responded from Florida Dept. of Law Enforcement, the State's Attorney's Office and the Medical Examiner's Office. The deceased couple has been identified as Tammie Renae Coatney (41) and her husband Billy Ray Coatney (47). At this time the incident appears to be a murder/suicide; however the investigation is continuing.

Flint, MI: Apparent domestic dispute turns deadly

A woman is dead after being shot following an apparent domestic dispute, according to Flint police.

Officers were called to East VanWagoner Avenue near Martin on the city's northwest side at about 6 a.m. Thursday.

When emergency crews arrived, they found the woman shot outside a home on Marvin Street.

Police said a 54-year-old man, who's considered a suspect in the woman's death, eventually showed up at the police station to turn himself in.

Police told TV5 the man entered the police station "soaked with blood." He was transported to Hurley Medical Center. His condition is not known.

Police said it appears the two were in a relationship.

No other details were released at this time.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Chemung, NY: Update: Sheriff: Chemung house fire was scene of murder/suicide

2:10 p.m. update: An investigation into a fire and multiple deaths at 2131 McDowell Road in the Town of Chemung has determined the house was the scene of a murder/suicide.

The initial stage of the investigation has determined that Mary E. Vinson, age 47, was killed by her estranged boyfriend, Dennis J. Perry, age 56, of that address, according to the Chemung County Sheriff's Office.

The exact cause of death for both Vinson and Perry is still under
investigation and is pending results of the autopsies.

A firearm, as well as other evidence, was collected at the scene. The investigation is continuing at this time.

Danville, IN: Police: Bombs Found In Home Where Man Killed Wife

DANVILLE, Ind. -- Police searching the home of a man accused of killing his wife before shooting himself discovered a box full of pipe bombs, investigators said.

Witnesses told police that Michael T. Giles, 37, and his wife, Emily C. Giles, 26, had been drinking in a barn with friends behind their home near 8000 North County Road 400 West in Hendricks County on Monday night.

When they got into an argument, Michael Giles followed Emily Giles into the home.

Friends said they heard gunshots and found the woman shot on the sidewalk. Michael Giles was found with a gunshot wound to the head.

Emily Giles was pronounced dead at the scene.

Her husband was flown by medical helicopter to St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis with serious injuries, police said.

A child who was asleep in the home at the time was not injured.

When police searched the couple's home Tuesday night, they discovered a metal box with 17 pipe bombs inside.

The bombs were loaded with nails and BBs.

They were destroyed at the scene by members of the Indianapolis police bomb squad early Wednesday.

El Campo, TX: Ex boyfriend accused of shooting two young boys and mother in Texas

Demond Bluntson, a Texas man accused of fatally shooting two boys, including his 1-year-old son, in a hotel room on Tuesday, has now been charged in their mother's killing.

A judge charged Bluntson, 36, Thursday in the murder of his former girlfriend, Brandy Cerny. Police said they found Cerny's body the same day Bluntson fatally shot her two sons in a Laredo Holiday Inn hotel room. One of the boys, who is Bluntson's son, 1-year-old Davian Blunston, died at the hotel while the other boy, 6-year-old Jaydin Thompson, died later at a hospital from his wounds.

Bluntson was being held in a Laredo jail when an El Campo judge signed a murder warrant, accusing him of killing the 28-year-old Cerny, whose body was found Tuesday in a shack about 200 miles away. Wharton County District Attorney Josh McCown said the charge could be upgraded to capital murder but investigations are ongoing.

Bluntson is now expected to be charged with capital murder in the death of the 6-year-old. Bluntson was already charged with capital murder in the death of his own 1-year-old son.

Aurora, IL: Trial opens in stabbing death of boyfriend

ST. CHARLES TOWNSHIP — The trial opened Tuesday for an Aurora woman accused of stabbing her live-in boyfriend to death.

Faith Martin, 27, 400 block of North River Street, is facing murder charges in the 2010 death of Willie Arrington. Aurora police said Martin stabbed Arrington in the chest during an argument at about 1:15 p.m. on Nov. 21, 2010, police said.

After the stabbing, Martin went next door and called 911, police said. According to a search warrant filed in the case, officers were called to the apartment for a medical problem. When they arrived, Martin had her hand wedged in the door and was screaming hysterically that her children were in the apartment with a man.

Officers tried to open the door, but Arrington’s body was blocking the entrance, the warrant says. According to the warrant, when police asked Martin what happened she said: “I (expletive) stabbed him; we got in a fight!”

Officers forced their way into the apartment and found two children, ages 1 and 5, unharmed. In the neighbor’s apartment, police found the knife they believe was used in the stabbing. Arrington was taken to Provena Mercy Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 2:25 p.m., police said.

Martin was originally scheduled to face a jury trial. According to the Kane County state’s attorney office, on Tuesday, her attorneys instead elected to face a bench trial in front of Judge Tim Sheldon.

Opening statements began Tuesday afternoon.

Fresno, CA: Woman Shot To Death In Fresno; Husband Arrested

FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) - Fresno Police have arrested a man accused of shooting his wife to death.

Daniel Galvan, 34, was booked into the Fresno County Jail on suspicion of murder.

Shortly after 10:30 p.m. Monday, police went to a home near Ezie and Dakota in East Fresno after receiving a call about a shooting.

When they got there, officers said they found Daniel's wife -- 41-year-old AnnMarie Galvan -- dead from several gunshot wounds to the upper body.

Daniel Galvan was arrested at the scene.

Detectives say the couple had a history of domestic violence. They say the couple separated in November 2011 after being married 12 years and had reunited about two weeks ago.

The couple had two young children.

Detectives say Daniel Galvan was known by family members to use methamphetamine, but it's not clear if he was under the influence during the deadly shooting.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

ARTICLE: Domestic violence homicides up in Pinellas

LARGO — Only six months into the year, Pinellas County already has logged seven domestic violence-related homicide cases — one more than in all of 2011.

Five of those cases were murder-suicides, while Pinellas had only one murder-suicide in 2011.

Those statistics alarm members of the Pinellas County Domestic Violence Task Force, which has tracked domestic violence trends in the county since 1996.

And the spike in numbers isn't occurring just in Pinellas County.

Leisa Wiseman, a spokeswoman with the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence, said her agency has been monitoring an explosion in the number of domestic-related homicides, stalking and other violent behavior across the state since 2009. The agency also has noticed an uptick in murder-suicides reported by Florida media in the last year.

Hillsborough County appears to be an exception. Officials there haven't seen a spike in domestic homicides, said fatality review team chairwoman Nikki Daniels.

The Pinellas task force doesn't study cases until they are closed by law enforcement, so members don't know why homicides seem to have skyrocketed in the county in the first half of this year. However, they suspect economic stressors, such as unemployment and foreclosure, or substance abuse, which data shows was a factor in 76 percent of cases over the past 12 years, might be playing a role.

The Pinellas task force is concerned about another recently determined statistic: In 69 percent of the 103 cases the task force has examined over the years, loved ones knew about violence within the relationship before the killing, but remained silent.

"What people will often say is they didn't know what to do. They didn't realize that someone being controlling or doing a lot of psychological abuse was just as harmful as the physical abuse and could lead to homicide just as physical violence could," said Frieda Widera, a victim advocate at the Largo Police Department and chairwoman of the task force's fatality review team.

"What that says to us is we need to provide more education, that the community needs to understand, not just the system," she said. "The only way we're going to end domestic homicide is if friends and family and co-workers and neighbors know how to recognize it and intervene."

Advocates realize some friends and loved ones might be reluctant to get involved for fear of retaliation, but Widera said there are safe ways to intervene.

"It's not stepping in when you see two people in the midst of a fight. That's when you put yourself in danger," she said. "It's more reaching out to a victim and saying here are resources. When you do that, it's a safe way because you're talking one-on-one. Perpetrators usually don't target someone who gives information, because the victim isn't going to tell them about that."

Among this year's Pinellas murder-suicides, as described by authorities:

• Thomas Cappadona, 51, killed himself in January after fatally shooting 52-year-old Shelly Gold, who neighbors say had voiced fears about asking her drunk, belligerent boyfriend of seven years to move out of their St. Petersburg home.

• Stephen Walsh, 58, killed his wife, Donalyn, and then himself in their Palm Harbor home in April after an apparent dispute.

• Eugene Agbebaku, 33, shot his 32-year-old estranged wife, Ingrid, and himself in Clearwater, where she and their children were staying with a relative. The couple had been scheduled to appear in divorce court the day of the June 5 shootings.

Each of the Pinellas murder-suicides this year was committed by males, police said. At least two of the couples were in the process of divorce. In two other cases, baffled loved ones told reporters they saw no warning signs.

Victim advocates say getting help from support groups, shelters and counselors to file restraining orders and create safety plans can greatly reduce the chance of a fatality.

Pinellas has two domestic violence centers: Community Action Stops Abuse (also known as CASA) in St. Petersburg and the Haven of RCS in Clearwater. But in 89 percent of local domestic fatalities studied by the task force, victims never had contact with the centers — either because of denial, embarrassment, fear or a lack of knowledge that such resources were available.

Local officials say sharing that information with the community will be key.

The Haven teaches lessons about healthy relationships to middle school-age boys and even children as young as preschool age.

Said Widera: "It's planting the seeds for a new generation that won't even consider domestic violence to be possible."

The nonprofit also gives free informational pamphlets and presentations to agencies and businesses, including hairstylists, dental offices and doctors, who sometimes deny that the problem affects their clientele.

The sessions train the professionals to recognize things like cuts to the scalp, broken dentures, canceled appointments or even unnecessary supervision by clients' partners as possible symptoms of abuse.

"There's still that stigma that it only happens to certain women and that it's not as prevalent as it is," said Courtney Hendrickson, Pinellas task force vice chairwoman and Haven outreach coordinator. "But it's not one race, one culture, one socioeconomic class. It's everyone."

Keyonna Summers can be reached at or (727) 445-4153. To write a letter to the editor, go to

Midwest City, OK: Midwest City couple die in murder-suicide, police report

MIDWEST CITY — A couple found dead last week in a mobile home died from gunshot wounds in a murder-suicide, police said Tuesday.

The state medical examiner ruled Ginny Peery, 41, was a victim of homicide and her husband, Walter Peery, 41, committed suicide.
The couple were found dead Thursday morning in their home at the Village Oaks mobile home park, 9429 SE 29. The bodies were discovered by a family member who lives in the home, Assistant Police Chief Sid Porter said.


Authorities in Graham County are investigating an apparent
Deputies say Cody Wayne Mahon shot his wife, Megan
Rogers, at their home in the Stecoah community around 7:30pm Monday, then turned the gun on
himself. Mahon died early this morning at the hospital. Neighbors were
stunned by the shootings, and authorities are not commenting on a
possible motive at this time.

Knox County, TN: Man says his wife was killed while they fought over gun

A Knox County man is charged with killing his wife during an argument.

John Michael Dabbs, 31, is charged with second degree murder in the death of his wife, Erica Kay Dabbs, 28.

Investigators say John Dabbs was no longer living in the home at Summertime Lane. According to the warrants, he came to the house along with some friends around midnight to retrieve some of his belongings, and got into an argument with his wife.

John Dabbs told investigators that Erica Dabbs got a handgun, and ordered him to leave the residence. He said that he lunged for the gun and the two struggled over it. He said he heard a "loud pop" and she fell to the floor. John Dabbs called 911 after she was shot.

Erica Dabbs was hit in the abdomen. She was transported to UT Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead.

John Michael Dabbs is being held in the Knox County Detention Facility on a $400,000.00 bond.

Guntersville, AL: Marshall County man found guilty of capital murder in wife, unborn child's deaths

GUNTERSVILLE, Alabama (AP) — Marshall County jurors have convicted a man of capital murder in the slaying of his wife and her unborn child at a car wash three years ago.
The trial of Jessie Phillips was believed to be the first test of a state law that allows a person suspected of killing a pregnant woman to be charged with two murders if the fetus also dies.

Prosecutors argued that Phillips killed his wife, Erica Droze, and her unborn child at a car wash in 2009. The shooting followed an argument that kept escalating.
Jurors deliberated about four hours before convicting Phillips on Monday.
Phillips was tried under a law called "Brody's Law." It was named because of the 2005 shooting death in Albertville of Brandy Parker and her unborn son, named Brody.
Sentencing was set for today at 9 a.m.

Glendale, AZ: PD: Glendale man accused of killing wife

A Glendale man was arrested on Saturday on suspicion of killing his wife, police said.

Police found a 64-year-old woman dead with a gunshot wound to the head Friday night.

Her husband, Thomas Glenn Bodine, 67, said he came home, noticed the body and called his daughter and son-in-law, police said.

Bodine told his son-in-law it was his fault his wife committed suicide and he also wanted to die, so the son-in-law hid the gun, police said.

Investigators determined the woman was in bed with a pillow over her head when she was shot, detectives said.

Detectives also said neither the victim nor the revolver had traces of blood, which indicates she was shot from a distance.

During an interview, Bodine told detectives his wife was holding their revolver in her right hand pointed toward the right side of her head, but investigators determined the bullet entered the left side of the victim's head, police said.

He also told police there were no more bullets for the revolver in the home, but detectives found some later in his night stand, police said. Bodine told police he forgot about the bullets.

Bodine was arrested Saturday on suspicion of first-degree murder.

North Wildwood, PA:Man who allegedly murdered two women in Pennsylvania arrested in North Wildwood

NORTH WILDWOOD--The Pennsylvania man who allegedly murdered his girlfriend and her mother was arrested Sunday in Cape May County. He remains behind bars in New Jersey while waiting to be extradited back to Pennsylvania where he faces murder charges.

“Very surprised, very surprised.” The general manager of Sandy Shores Resort Motel in North Wildwood says he couldn't be more shocked after learning the man accused of murdering two people in Pennsylvania was taken into custody at this business early Sunday morning. “The detectives and undercover were professional,” said Sal Battaglia, “nobody knew anything, we found out all the information pertaining to the case the following day.”

Authorities say 22 year-old Gary Charles Gerlach was arrested without incident, and confessed to murdering his girlfriend, 22 year-old Mackenzie Hess, and her 56 year-old mother, Mona Hess Saturday morning inside the Lancaster County, Pennsylvania home the three shared. Autopsy reports show that Mackenzie had been strangled in an upstairs bedroom, while Mona was beaten to death. “She was an all around great person,” said one of their neighbors, “she always said hi to my daughter asked how she was doing. It' know, it's really sad.”

Authorities say information developed by Pennsylvania detectives led them to North Wildwood, and even though the crime may've happened a state away, some hope that just the fact the suspect was arrested in town does not negatively affect the family friendly resort. “The Wildwoods are a great place to be,” said Battaglia, “it's a safe area, North Wildwood is gorgeous.”

Gerlach, who is facing murder charges back home, is in the Cape May County jail on $25,000 bail and is waiting to be extradited by to Pennsylvania. Authorities say an extradition hearing for Gerlach has not yet been scheduled, due to lack of legal representation for him. They expect the proceeding to happen in the next couple of days.

Rocky Point, NC: 911: 'I got a call from an employee who said he killed his girlfriend'

ROCKY POINT, NC (WECT) – A man was arrested and charged with murder after a woman was found dead Friday night. Several neighbors said the two had been dating for about a year.

According to Captain Ezzell of the Pender County Sheriff's Office, the department is investigating the murder of 50-year-old Debra Long. The crime was reported around 3:30 a.m. Saturday.

The Sheriff's Office said Long was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said 39-year-old Tony Allen Harris is a suspect in the death. He was arrested and charged with murder, according to Ezzell. He's currently in the Pender County Jail under no bond.

911 calls reveal Harris called several people close to him after the incident. He apparently called his boss and his mother saying he killed his girlfriend.

"I got a call from an employee who said he killed his girlfriend," explained Jeff Dobbin when calling 911. "He just told me that she tried to attack him with a knife and somehow he got it away from her and she ended up dead."

Another call went out to his mother, who then called Kim Simmons with Physician Alliance Mental Health in New Hanover County.

"I just got a call from a client's mother saying that her son called saying he just killed his girlfriend," explained Simmons on the 911 call. "Mom is on her way to the house right now. I asked her not to go in when she gets there, because I'm afraid he may kill himself and/or kill her."

Long's close friend Carla Spencer said Long planned to get a restraining order against her boyfriend on Monday, but she never made it.

"It's just a shame. She was a good lady. She would help anybody. She would give anybody the shirt off of her back," Spencer said.

Now, she wants others women to take action before it's too late.

"Women, get away from men like that. It's not worth it. It's not worth your life. That is not love," she said. "Just cold, cold hearted. That's all I can say about him."

Harris's criminal history dates back to 1989. He's been convicted three times for assault on a female. He has also served time for several drug and breaking and entering convictions.

Long was found at 140 China Berry Lane in Rocky Point. Spencer said Long moved in to that house a few months ago.

Tucson, AZ: Tucson man given 7 years in fatal shooting

A Tucson man who admitted he shot and killed his mother's boyfriend and shot at another man was sentenced to seven years in prison Monday.

Angel Lerma, 18, was indicted on first-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder charges two years ago in the death of Jorge Castillo, 36.

Last month Lerma pleaded guilty to manslaughter and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Under the terms of his plea agreement, he was facing between seven and 36 years in prison.

Lerma shot Castillo, a registered sex offender who was in the country illegally, because he was beating Lerma's mother in front of several children, defense attorney Sheena Chawla has said. The second man was almost shot in the process, she said.

Soccer coaches, a counselor and a teacher wrote letters to Pima County Superior Court Judge Teresa Godoy on Lerma’s behalf, court documents state.

Godoy sentenced Lerma to seven years for the manslaughter and five years for the assault and ran them concurrently.

Oklahoma City, OK: OKC Woman Accused Of Killing Boyfriend Says She Acted In Self-Defense

OKLAHOMA CITY - The Oklahoma City woman accused of dragging and killing her boyfriend with her car claims she acted in self-defense.

Maria Rodriguez went before a judge on Tuesday for her probable cause video hearing. And it was during that hearing that she claims she acted in self-defense.

Maria Rodriguez shook her head, as the judge told her she was being held for second degree murder in the death of her boyfriend Uriel Ontiveros. She also broke down in tears as she tried to tell the judge her side of the story.

Family members we spoke with Monday afternoon confirm both Maria Rodriguez and Uriel Ontiveros had a volatile relationship, saying they fought all the time. They also confirm that Rodriguez is a married mother of one, but had been dating Ontiveros for about a year.

But Rodriguez painted a very different picture for the judge.

"I am innocent. I was trying to leave from abuse and he jumped on the truck and he fell," Rodriguez said.

According to court papers, Rodriguez and Ontiveros had been out dancing and drinking that Sunday night, and when they returned to his home near S.W. 30th and Klein, they got into a fight.

They say Rodriguez tried to leave, but that Ontiveros pulled her out of her truck and would not let her leave.

They confirm when she tried to get back in the truck to drive away, Ontiveros grabbed onto the truck and tried to open the door. And it was when he let go, he was run over by the truck.

Court papers also confirm Rodriguez called 911 for help and went back to the scene to try to help Ontiveros. But then got back in her truck and drove home.

We checked and neither Rodriguez nor Ontiveros ever filed a VPO. Rodriguez is being held without bond.

She is yet to be formally charged.

Grand Rapids, MI: Suspect in Oak Hill Cemetery killing admitted to 'homicidal thoughts' in January, court records show

GRAND RAPIDS, MI -- A 33-year-old woman, who authorities say is a suspect in the stabbing death of a man in Oak Hill Cemetery, told doctors in January she had "homicidal thoughts," court records show.
Christina Kipkorir, who has an extensive mental health history, told psychologists earlier this year that she felt depressed and had homicidal thoughts toward her ex-boyfriend.
"She stated she would have killed him if she had a knife," one caseworker wrote in January.
Robert Shields, 67, who was reportedly Kipkorir's boyfriend, was found stabbed to death at Oak Hill Cemetery Thursday morning. He was a convicted felon who most recently served time for sexual assault and was released from prison in early 2011.
It wasn't clear whether Shields was the "ex-boyfriend" that Kipkorir referenced to psychologists when she was hospitalized at Pine Rest in January.
But in a Jan. 6 petition for her hospitalization, she noted her ex-boyfriend recently got out of prison and that was the person for which she harbored ill thoughts.
It was only one of several mental-health related commitments for Kipkorir since 2009, who was repeatedly described by caseworkers as having major depression, suicidal tendencies, mood disorder and borderline personality disorder.

She had taken overdoses in the past and, according to one case manager, has "chronic mental illness."
Kipkorir was picked up by authorities the same day as Shields' body was found, but prosecutors have not charged her with homicide.
Instead, she is so far charged with two misdemeanor counts of providing false information to police and also disobeying a police command,
Grand Rapids District Court Judge Michael Christensen noted she is a "prime suspect" in the homicide, and set her bond at $50,000.
Court records show psychologists first sought to have Kipkorir treated for mental health issues in 2004.
"The patient states she wants to hurt herself with a knife and or stab or shoot her husband," a doctor wrote after examining her then.
Justice Moreno, who said Kipkorir began living only recently at the Thomas Street SE women's home run by his mother, said he knew Shields.
"He was a nice guy," he said, alleging that Kipkorir did not treat him fairly.

Quapaw, OK: Former Concord resident, 21, killed in Oklahoma

A former Concord resident was found slain near the town of Quapaw, Okla., and her ex-boyfriend has been arrested on suspicion of murder.
Danyel Borden, 21, attended Berean Christian High School in Walnut Creek, according to her Facebook page.
A passer-by found Borden on Thursday afternoon lying in a road just north of Quapaw, a town of about 900 in Ottawa County, in northeastern Oklahoma. The cause of death has not yet been determined, but Borden's body showed "obvious" signs of trauma, according to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.
Dustin Everett Boggs, who the bureau described as Borden's ex-boyfriend, was arrested early the next morning at a home in Miami, Okla. Boggs is currently being held in the Ottawa County Jail with no bond, according to the Miami News Record.
Messages to Borden's family weren't immediately returned.

Phoenix, AZ: Whiteriver woman gets prison for killing boyfriend

A northeastern Arizona woman has been sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for the fatal stabbing of her boyfriend.

Federal prosecutors said 19-year-old Sutero Anessa Quintero was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court in Phoenix.

The Whiteriver resident pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter three months ago.

Prosecutors said Quintero was in an altercation with her longtime boyfriend on Oct. 16, 2010.

They said Quintero stabbed the victim in the chest and back with a knife.

New Orleans, LA: Woman fleeing boyfriend's beating runs into I-10 traffic, is killed

Lorenzo Hampton was suspicious when he got a phone call from his sister's boyfriend with shocking news. Lucretia Hampton had stopped her vehicle alongside Interstate 10 in Metairie to relieve herself, walked into traffic and was killed by two passing trucks.

"I know my sister," he said Monday. "There's no way she would do that on the side of the road. No way."
Instead, State Police say, Lucretia Hampton, 35, had been driving east on I-10 near Veterans Memorial Boulevard with her boyfriend, George Washington Cummings IV, 39, when she pulled over because he was beating her. The couple got out of the car and continued fighting on the highway.
Fleeing Cummings, Hampton ran along the shoulder and eventually into the highway to flag down a motorist. She was hit by two vehicles and pronounced dead at the scene, said Melissa Matey, spokeswoman for State Police Troop B.
Cummings was booked with manslaughter and second-degree battery. Bond information was not available Monday.
The wreck occurred Sunday about 9:10 p.m., as Hampton and Cummings were returning to Violet from a Father's Day party put on by Cummings' brother. Meanwhile, Rayford Corkern of Gretna was headed home from the Treasure Chest casino in Kenner. He never saw Lucretia Hampton in the roadway.

"All I know is I hit something and I didn't know what I hit," said Corkern, who is retired after 51 years as a firefighter on the West Bank. "Next thing I know is a 'Boom!' and both of my air bags deployed. My truck was filled in smoke and the air bags were in my face.
"I didn't want to make a hard right and hit someone who was trying to pass me. Eventually I was able to get over on the side of the road."
Corkern said he and the second driver whose vehicle struck Hampton were immediately met by deputies. "They give us the Breathalyzer test and all those other kinds of tests and tape recordings," he said. "I told them, 'I guarantee you won't find any alcohol in my system.' I can't handle cough medicine with codeine."
When Corkern walked around his truck, he could see blood on the hood and windshield. "That's when I realized something bad had happened," he said. "I didn't realize what I had hit."

either Corkern nor the other driver, Joseph Causey of Metairie, was arrested. "They will not be charged with any traffic violations," Matey said. "When it comes to any pedestrian in the roadway, the vehicle has the right of way and the pedestrians are prohibited in the state of Louisiana" on interstate highways.
"How the heck do you go off in the middle of traffic to wave somebody down? How do you do that in the middle of the night on the interstate?" Corkern wondered. "The lady had to really have been in fear of her life."
Lorenzo Hampton said his sister and Cummings argued frequently. "He was always picking on the girl. Little things, like if she was late coming home." He said his sister told him that she intended to reunite with her husband, the father of her six children.
On Monday, he said he had 'been in touch with another sister, Thonica in Lafayette, to talk about their five nephews and niece. The boys -- ages 17, 16, 13, 11 and 7 -- likely will stay with Lorenzo Hampton. His sister will take care of the 9-year-old girl.
It's a tremendous responsibility, but families take care of one another, Hampton said. He has two children of his own. "I'm 22, but I'm a minister. I've got a job and I've got a wife, and I will be all right."

Hendricks County, IN: Couple found shot, woman dies in rural Hendricks County

The Hendricks County Sheriff’s Department is investigating a shooting that left a wife dead and her husband in very serious condition.

Witnesses told police a Hendricks County man shot his wife, killing her, and then himself after an argument Monday night. The incident happened around 9:50 p.m. in the 8200 block of North Hendricks County Road 400 West. The home is in a rural area between Lizton and North Salem.

Officers found the woman on the sidewalk outside the couple’s house, said Lt. Jim Yetter, spokesman for the sheriff’s department.

She was pronounced dead at the scene. The man, 37, was transported to St. Vincent Hospital in very serious condition. His current medical condition is unknown at this time.

A witness told police he and the couple were having drinks in the outbuilding by their house Monday night. The couple got into an argument and the witness, who did not see the shooting, heard a shot fired and called 9-1-1, Yetter said.

The witness later heard at least two more shots after that, Yetter said.

Yetter said the couple has a child together. The grandmother picked up the toddler Monday night.

The woman’s name will be released as soon as her relatives are notified, Yetter said.

Moreno Valley, CA: Moreno Valley: Jury continues deliberations in gruesome stabbing death

Jury deliberations resumed today in the trial of a parolee accused of fatally stabbing his girlfriend during an argument that ensued after she returned home late to her Moreno Valley apartment.

Brandon Ramsey Wilson, 28, could get 50 years to life in prison if convicted of first-degree murder and a sentence-enhancing weapons allegation in the March 27, 2011, slaying of Renisha Leshay Bruins.

Deliberations in the case got under way Wednesday afternoon, but the six-man, six-woman panel did not deliberate on Thursday because of a scheduling issue.

On Friday, Riverside County Superior Court Judge Richard Fields admonished a juror when evidence of possible misconduct came to light. However, the juror was not removed from the panel.

In her closing statement Wednesday, Deputy District Attorney Alma Hernandez described Wilson as a ”cold-blooded murderer” and asked the jury to find him guilty of first-degree murder, not voluntary manslaughter, which is what the defense argued was justified.

“The defense would like you to believe that these were just random stab wounds inflicted on the victim,” Hernandez said. ”But how is it she got stabbed in the back and the neck? The last moments of this girl’s life were violent and painful. She died looking into his eyes. And he didn’t care.”

According to the prosecution, Wilson attacked Bruins after she returned home in the predawn hours of March 27, 2011.

The 27-year-old woman had been partying with several girlfriends at the Morongo Casino Resort & Spa in Cabazon and came back to her apartment in the 12000 block of Memorial Way to find the defendant waiting up for her, according
to trial testimony.

An argument followed, during which Wilson pulled a knife and stabbed the victim repeatedly, the prosecution alleges.

The defendant, who had been living at the residence while working one day a week as a parking lot attendant, fled the location and, after consulting his parents, surrendered at the Moreno Valley sheriff’s station, telling deputies he had accidentally killed his girlfriend, witnesses testified.

Deputy Public Defender Judith Gweon presented evidence during the five- day trial that Wilson suffered from a psychological disorder that caused him to act impulsively without realizing the consequences of his actions.

“He is generally non-confrontational, passive and shy,” Gweon told the jury, adding that her client was “provoked” by Bruins, who was the first to go for a knife as the two argued.

“He went off. He overreacted,” Gweon said. “The evidence shows he loved Renisha, tended to her, catered to her. Where is the motive for him to kill her?”

Hernandez blasted the proposition that Wilson was non-violent and suffered from a cognitive dysfunction, noting that he had a prior conviction for robbery and had never experienced anything that would have caused psychological trauma.

“He never even played football so he could claim a brain injury,” the prosecutor said. ”Being impulsive doesn’t give you a pass. You can’t say, “I have a bad temper so I get to kill my girlfriend.” You need to let him know that what he did to this woman was wrong. You can do that by finding him guilty of murder.”

Knott County, KY: Estranged wife charged in stabbing death of her husband in Knott County

A man was found stabbed to death at a home in the Amburgey community of Knott County at about midnight on Saturday, and his estranged wife has been charged with murder.

State police and representatives of the Knott County Sheriff's Department found Jonathon Sparkman, 27, of Topmost suffering from multiple stab wounds a home on Perkins Madden Road after they were called to the scene at 11:58 p.m. on a report of fighting, according to a news release from state police.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Kayla Sparkman, 25, of Litt Carr was charged with murder and taken to the Kentucky River Regional Jail.

Engle-Bowling Funeral Home in Hazard is in charge of arrangements.

Santa Maria, CA: Manhunt continues for stabbing suspect

Several times a week Selina Lopez Bustos would stop by her boyfriend’s home in the 1000 block of North Sixth Street. Neighbors said they frequently saw them sitting in a car, casually chatting the hours away.

Now police are on a manhunt for the boyfriend, Eduardo Robles, 23, a suspect in the Saturday morning stabbing death of Bustos, 30, an auto insurance agent who ran an office on North H Street.

The stabbing of Bustos is the fourth violent death in the Lompoc Valley since March 8, when a prison guard was killed in a Lompoc motel. In May a Mission Hills woman was stabbed to death. Earlier this month, a Lompoc man shot two people before being killed by police.

Sgt. Chuck Strange said Monday that police have received leads that Robles has left Santa Barbara County, but he added that it is too early to say the information is conclusive. Strange said Robles has contacts in northern and southern California, as well as Mexico.

“A lot of the evidence points out that he has left Lompoc,” Strange said. “He could have gone north or he could have gone south, but we’re trying to narrow down the scope of where he might be.”

Police are asking for any potential helpful information to track Robles, whom police described as 6 feet tall, weighing 200 to 230 pounds, with hazel eyes and brown hair. Police can be contacted at 736-2341.

Strange would not say whether witnesses had seen Robles fatally stab Bustos, but they did say that he was a strong suspect.

“There was definitely enough evidence and information to justify a warrant for his arrest,” Strange said.

On Monday morning, neighbors in the North Sixth Street neighborhood — the home Robles lived in stands out because of the overgrowth of weeds in the front yard — had little information about the homicide.

Neighbor Sharon McCrackin said she had often seen Bustos and Robles talking in a car that was always parked across the street from the house where Robles lived.

“She was there off and on all the time,” McCrackin said. “Sometimes in the day time, other times around the night time, but all the time.”

Neighbors said they did not know much about Robles, who shared a home with four others. Sharon’s husband, David McCrackin, said Robles was a pleasant neighbor.

“He’d always wave hi and grin,” said David McCrackin, who said communication did not go further than that.

Bustos was a more recognizable figure in Lompoc. The hometown girl graduated from Lompoc High School and then went on to Hancock College where she received four associate of arts degrees between fall 2000 to the spring of 2011. Bustos was studying for her bachelor’s degree in psychology at Antioch University Santa Barbara.

Bustos’ long-time friend, Carmen Perez, who was studying psychology at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, said that Bustos would have graduated next year. Two weeks ago they shared a meal and talked about their plans to become psychologists.

“We used to always talk about how we would go on in life and some day become psychologists and help people we love most and be there to support them,” Perez said. “I enjoyed every single time I spent with her.”

Friends and co-workers said Bustos doted on her two young nephews and was a regular attendee at La Purisima Concepcion Catholic Church in Lompoc.

Bustos and her older sister Elvira Bustos-Martinez were regulars, along with their father and mother. Bustos lived with her parents and supported both of them, who were unemployed, and those who knew her said family was the most important aspect of her life.

Bustos served as a Eucharistic Minister at La Purisima Church, giving communion when scheduled. She had participated in a prayer group back in 1999 and stayed involved in her church.

Maria Barboza, a friend and secretary at La Purisima Church, said that Bustos was regularly a popular choice for bridesmaid at weddings and welcomed at quinceanera.

“She has a natural beauty, but she always looked nicely,” Barboza said. “Looking nice and clean cut was important to her.”

Bustos also made a name for herself as an auto insurance agent in the community. She started off as a customer service agent before earning her license as an agent in November 2006.

Her long-time boss Robert Bales, of Acceptance Insurance Services, said that Bustos was responsible, self-confident, very dependable, and a meticulous dresser.

“We were hoping she would take over the business one day,” said Bales.

Robert’s wife, Linda Bales said, “I can’t say enough. I thought the world of her.”

Karina Araujo, 21, was hired by Bustos in March. A week ago, Bustos invited Araujo to get her nails done when she had an appointment. Bustos was a fun-loving person who thoroughly enjoyed shopping and would invite people along on shopping or lunch appointments, she said.

When the office became quiet, Araujo said, Bustos would turn up the radio and the two of them would sing Mexican banda music.

“We’d turn up the radio when we were bored,” Araujo said. “We’d start singing or dancing.”

Police received a call at 6:20 a.m. Saturday asking that they check the welfare of a woman in the 1000 block of North Sixth Street.

When David McCrackin came back from walking his dog he saw police cars gathered outside Robles’ home. There were three girls standing in the street crying hysterically and a group of boys were standing together further down the street.

“They were crying, they were hysterical,” McCrackin said.

Anyone interested in making a donation to the Bustos family can stop by Acceptance Insurance Services, 1012 North H St., or call 735-5555.