A California judge has been accused of killing his wife while drunk, using a gun stashed at her ankle. After carrying out the shooting, he sent a message to his co-workers “I will not come tomorrow. I will be in custody,” the court said Tuesday (15/8).
“Judge Jeffrey Ferguson had dozens of guns and 26,000 rounds of ammunition in his home when officers arrived and found his wife dead from a gunshot wound to the chest,” the court said. Prosecutors said there was a strong smell of alcohol coming from Ferguson, 72.
When he was arrested and told police, “Well, looks like I’m going to be burdened for a while.” A court in Los Angeles heard Ferguson and his wife, Sheryl, had an argument over dinner at a restaurant near their home in the affluent suburb of Anaheim.
“During a dispute on August 3, the judge pointed the finger at his wife in imitation of a firearm,” Orange District Attorney Christopher Alex told the court. The argument continued at home, where Sheryl Ferguson, 65, said “the words that describe: ‘Why don’t you show me a real gun?'” Alex said.
At this point, Ferguson took his revolver from his ankle hook and shot his wife in the chest at point-blank range. Ferguson called 911 and called for paramedics, saying his wife had been shot. “When the operator asked if he had fired the weapon he told them he did not want to discuss the matter at the time,” Alex told the court.
After hanging up, Ferguson sent a text message to the clerk of court and security to say: “I’m losing control. I just shot my wife. I won’t come tomorrow. I will be in custody. I’m very sorry,” Alex said. A home inspection found 47 firearms, all legally held.
Ferguson, who has been a judge since 2015, denied murder when he appeared in court on Tuesday. “We want to state clearly that this was an accidental shooting and not a crime,” said Attorney Paul Meyer. Ferguson was released on bail and ordered not to drink alcohol. He is expected to appear in court again on October 30.