LEAVENWORTH, Kan. — Charges will not be filed after a deadly domestic violence shooting in October.
The Leavenworth County District Attorney announced the decision Tuesday morning, saying the shooting was clearly a case of self defense.
Deputies arrested Jamie Zertuche at her Leavenworth home on October 16, 2021. Court documents show she called 911 to report she shot her husband in the chest.
When officers arrived at Zertuche’s home, information from the D.A.’s office showed she was holding a semi-automatic pistol and a cell phone.
The responding officers found Zertuche with a bloody mouth, and her left eye was almost completely swollen shut. She also had other injuries to her face, ribs, and a possible broken ankle, according to court records.
Deputies found Zertuche’s husband, Eddie, still alive but injured, on the floor near the house’s front door.
Officers attempted to help Eddie, but court documents show he made an obscene comment and gesture to officers. Zertuche then told responders that her husband had been drinking. Eddie later died of his injuries at a hospital.
Deputies reported they also found evidence of marijuana and testosterone use in the house.
During an interview, Zertuche told officers her husband had been both physically and verbally abusive “for a long time.” She reported that he’d been beating her for three days before she shot him. At one point during the beating Zertuche told officers her husband dragged her from their bedroom and knocked her out.
She told officers he threatened to kill her multiple times during the three days of abuse. She said he also threatened to burn down their house and kill her father.
At one point Zertuche told investigators she was able to run out of the house with a gun. She said her husband dragged her back into the house by her hair. She said he then picked her up by her throat. When she felt like she was losing consciousness, she said she fired the gun until it was empty.
The Leavenworth District Attorney said that after reviewing the facts of the case, it is clear that Zertuche shot her husband. He said it’s also clear that Zertuche suffered years of abuse and feared for her life.
“The torture Ms. Zertuche described in the days, and immediate minutes before she shot Mr. Zertuche equated to self-defense,” Todd Thompson, Leavenworth County D.A. wrote explaining his decision not to prosecute Zertuche.
Thompson said it is clear that Zertuche acted in self defense when she shot her husband.