Trial opens for woman held in husband’s death — (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

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Las Vegas Review-Journal (NV)

May 7, 1998

By Caren Benjamin,  Review-Journal

A woman who shot and killed her husband in front of a state trooper last year was an angry and vindictive schemer, prosecutors said Wednesday in opening statements in the murder trial of Linda Carbary.

But defense attorneys asked jurors to consider whether Carbary’s actions were mitigated by the fact she was a drug- and- alcohol addled victim of abuse with low self-esteem.   Carbary, 33, is charged with murder in the March 15, 1997 death of Jeffrey Carbary.

The couple had been married for about two years when Jeffrey Carbary announced that he was leaving her, Chief Deputy District Attorney Christopher Laurent told jurors in District Judge Lee Gates’ courtroom.  A few days after he actually moved out, his wife told friends she would kill him and possibly herself if he didn’t come back, Laurent said.  She even went as far as making arrangements for the care of her teen-age son and writing a suicide note, he said.

The first shot was fired after the couple met at a restaurant, where Linda Carbary begged for a second chance and was rebuffed in the parking lot, Laurent said.  She aimed a gun through the car windshield directly at him but the bullet didn’t pierce the glass, Laurent said.  The husband then began driving and she followed in her car until he saw a Nevada Highway Patrol trooper with his lights on parked off Interstate 15.  Laurent said he pulled up behind the trooper on the shoulder near the Cheyenne Avenue exit.Laurent said Linda Carbary pulled up behind her husband, who told her to ‘take the car, take whatever you want, just leave me alone or just shoot me if you’re going to.’  She did just that, at close range in the head.

The trooper at the scene called for help but Jeffrey Carbary died on the way to University Medical Center.  The prosecutor said that in the following days Linda Carbary called friends she had spoken to when planning the slaying and told them she was neither sad nor sorry.  Special Public Defender Michael Cherry did not dispute that Linda Carbary shot her husband, but he said the scenario was quite different. The Carbarys had always been a ‘tumultuous couple’ with a history of gunplay that often ended with their making up and deciding to start over, Cherry told jurors.’

Jeffrey Carbary was really into guns, into that kind of thing, into making bombs,’ Cherry said.  Cherry said his client’s husband was also into dominating and abusing his wife and had given her herpes.  The night of the shooting, he said, Linda Carbary ‘had become dependant on Jeffrey, she was suicidal, a wreck, lonely, abandoned, in poor health, suffering from a seizure disorder, suffering from PMS, menstrual pain.  ‘To medicate all these ills she had taken prescription painkillers and anti-depressants then mixed those drugs with alcohol, Cherry said.