A man who shot his wife in a confrontation over her staying out all night claimed his gun went off accidentally as he banged the barrel against the passenger side window of her Chevy Tahoe, police said today in Columbus Recorder's Court.
Kerry Lamar Coppins' 32-year-old wife was in unsatisfactory condition Monday at The Medical Center, to which she drove herself after a bullet from her husband's .40-caliber Glock pistol broke the Tahoe's window, went through her right arm into her right shouler and lodged in her left hip, Detective Murray Gunderson told Judge Mary Buckner today. Coppins, 34, faces charges of aggravated assault and using a gun during a crime.
The shooting happened when Coppins' wife came home about 6 a.m. Saturday after being out all night. Coppins was so angry that when she pulled into the driveway of their home in the 900 block of 53rd Street, he came rushing outside with a gun and demanded she let him into the front passenger seat, Gunderson said.
When she refused to unlock the door, he started banging on the window with the butt of the pistol, and when that didn't break the glass, he started hitting the window with the gun's barrel, Gunderson said. The gun fired as she began to back out of the driveway, he said.
Gunderson said Coppins told investigators that he and his wife had been having problems with their marriage for a couple of months, that she had been staying out later and later and that he suspected her of infidelity. He said the wife, who was not in court to testify, was "very guarded" about discussing those issues and told police only that she had been out with friends the night before the shooting.
Coppins told officers that he had awakened about 3 a.m. Saturday and upon realizing his wife still was not home, he made calls to her cell phone she did not answer until around 5 a.m., when they started arguing over the phone, Gunderson said.
He said Coppins told police that when his wife got home, he wanted her to drive him to wherever she had been, and if he discovered she had not been with relatives, then someone was going to have "a bad day."
At the hearing's conclusion, Buckner set bonds of $15,000 on the aggravated assault charge and $5,000 on the weapon charge and ordered Coppins to have no contact with his wife until the case is resolved.