Court Drama: Barbara Sheehan Won't Handle Guns that Killed Husband

Drama in a courtroom in New York City on Thursday, as a woman on trial for killing her allegedly abusive cop husband refused to handle the weapons she used to kill him.

Barbara Sheehan was testifying on her own behalf when prosecutors hoping to have her recreate the shooting asked her to pick up guns.

“No, I don’t want to!” Sheehan screamed as she sobbing uncontrollably, according to the New York Post. “I don’t want to do this. I’m going to get sick physically."

She didn't get sick physically, but after she calmed down she told the jury how she shot her husband, a retired New York City police officer, eleven times as he shaved in the bathroom of their Queens home in February 2008.

Sheehan said her husband pointed his gun at her during an argument and threatened to kill her, so she shot him with a gun that she was holding. After emptying that weapon into him, she then picked up his gun and emptied that, too.

Sheehan said the shooting was in self-defense, the culmination of decades of abuse at the hands of her husband. Prosecutors, though, said the killing was a well thought-out plot. They pointed out that just three days after being released from jail after being charged with his killing, she wrote a letter to his life-insurance company asking for money.

She asked that the money be given to the couple's children, but prosecutors presented canceled checks for more than $300,000 from her children that paid off the mortgage and home equity loans on Sheehan's house.

Sheehan's son followed her on the witnesses stand, backing up her claims of abuse.


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