by Bill Knowles
TRINIDAD — A Trinidad area woman is facing second-degree murder charges in a case stemming from a domestic altercation between herself and her husband on May 30.
Victoria Smith, 29, was charged with Criminal Attempt 2nd Degree Murder for allegedly firing several pistol shots at her husband, Gerald Smith, 37.
Three sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the residence at about 8:30 pm on a report of a disturbance in progress with weapons involved and, according to their statement, when they arrived they found Gerald Smith standing at the foot of the driveway with his hands in the air.
The incident, at 19000 Spirit Lane in Las Animas County, began while the couple was watching their 5-year-old son play outside.
They were sitting on the tailgate of Ms. Smith’s pickup truck talking, Mr. Smith told Las Animas County Sheriff’s Deputies. He began addressing the issue of her going out and drinking too much. Ms. Smith, according to Mr. Smith, began to get angry with him. However Ms. Smith told officers that it was Mr. Smith who became angry first.
According to her statement, Mr. Smith got up and tipped the barbeque grill over and began yelling at her. He then grabbed her, throwing her to the ground. Ms. Smith told the deputies that he then struck her with a closed fist and began choking her. She told the officers she believed her husband was going to kill her. She then told her son to call 911, but Mr. Smith took her phone.
By then their son had grabbed a pocketknife and tried stabbing his father in an effort to “save my mom” but Mr. Smith took the knife from him. As their son continued trying to protect her from Mr. Smith, both the mother and the boy were able to jump into her truck in an effort to get away, but Mr. Smith grabbed the vehicle keys.
As Mr. Smith’s anger grew, Ms. Smith and the boy remained in the truck. Then she reached into the truck’s console and grabbed a .40 caliber Smith and Wesson handgun.
After more verbal confrontations Mr. Smith made his way back to the house. Ms. Smith told the deputies that she thought he was going to get a gun and shoot her. That is when she opened fire, emptying the handgun’s magazine. Mr. Smith was not hit.
Ms. Smith and the young boy ran to a neighbor’s house and called dispatch.
Mr. Smith’s mother took the young boy and both Mr. and Ms. Smith were taken to the detention center and booked. Ms. Smith was charged with Criminal Attempt 2nd Degree Murder. Mr. Smith was charged with Menacing, Domestic Violence, and Child Abuse. Both were able to bond out of jail.