White man Thomas E. Edwards is charged with aggravated murder in the death of his wife, Teresa K. Edwards Fight about car led to killing, police say
Man says he shot wife because she wouldn’t leave bed to go shop In a rambling, sometimes incoherent conversation with a Gahanna police dispatcher, white man Thomas E. Edwards said he had just murdered his wife and cried about his likely fate.
“Ma’am, I don’t wanna go to jail for the rest of my life,” he said. “The only option is life without parole or death.”
“Why do you think those are your only options?” she asked.
“Watching TV,” he said.
Later, after his arrest, he told police that he had shot his wife four times in the head because she refused to get out of bed to buy a car with him on Sunday morning.
He said “there was a chance” he would not have shot Teresa K. Edwards if, “when she saw the gun, she immediately got out of bed and started getting ready,” according to a police report.
Franklin County Municipal Court Judge Anne Taylor set bond at $750,000 yesterday when Edwards made his initial court appearance on a charge of aggravated murder.
Edwards, 60, and his wife, also 60, had been married 34 years. Records show Gahanna police were called to the couple’s home in 2001 and 2005 on domestic-violence reports.
Police said they learned of the shooting from a nephew of Edwards’, who called police shortly before 7 a.m.
Edwards later told police that he called his sister to tell her that he had killed his wife. He and his sister were still talking while the nephew spoke to police on another phone line.
“He is an alcoholic,” the nephew told the dispatcher. “It seems like he’s drunk, just the way she’s talking to him.”
Officers surrounded the house at 361 Albion Way and had a dispatcher call the residence. Edwards answered and spoke with the dispatcher for about 30 minutes.
Edwards eventually went to the front door and surrendered at the dispatcher’s urging.
According to a police report read in court by Assistant Prosecutor Sam Porter, Edwards told officers that he and his wife had argued for a week about her buying a car.
He said he awoke her about 5 a.m. and told her to get ready to make a purchase, but she stayed in bed.
Mr. Edwards “went and sat at his office desk, where he had a cigarette and a drink and got his .38-caliber handgun,” police wrote. He said he took the gun to the bedroom and “while she begged for her life asking him to stop, he shot her four times in the head.”
When asked by police what his intentions were when he grabbed the gun, he replied, “What are most people’s intentions when they grab a gun? To shoot someone.”
At one point as he talked with the dispatcher, Edwards said, “I gotta call my wife, too, and tell her what happened. If I could light a cigarette and let (police) in, would they let me call my wife on my cellphone?”
“Oh no,” he then said, remembering. “I can’t call my wife. I killed her.”
On Nov. 28, 2001, Edwards fired several rounds into the walls of their house during a fight with his wife, police said. He was charged with domestic violence, assault, aggravated menacing and using a weapon while under the influence.
He was charged on Feb.23, 2005, with simple assault and domestic violence after another fight with his wife, police said.
He pleaded guilty to unlawful restraint in 2002 and negligent assault in 2005, both misdemeanors, Porter said.