Spa shooting victim spoke about years of abuse in court
October 23, 2012 (CHICAGO) (WLS) -- In her own words, the public is learning about Zina Haughton's fear after years of abuse.
In the recording of a bizarre court room appearance, Radcliffe Haughton's voice is also heard acting as his own attorney, questioning his wife.
The deadly shooting happened Sunday in Brookfield, Wis., a suburb of Milwaukee.
Zina Haughton was known by her clients as an expert stylist. Two years ago, she was interviewed about a hair-straightening technique.
It is painful now for those who knew her to hear her voice from last Thursday's hearing in the Milwaukee County court as she recounted why she needed a protective order against her husband, Radcliffe Haughton.
"The scariest night of my life ... He ran in the basement and he came upstairs and he pulled a gun from behind his pants and it accidentally went off," said Zina Haugton in court. "In between me and my daughter's head, about two inches from both of our heads."
A couple weeks earlier, on October 4th, witnesses saw Radcliffe Haughton slash the tires of her car in the parking lot of Azana Spa, where the shootings took place. In court, Zina explained what triggered his actions.
"My husband thinks I'm cheating on him. He woke up really angry that morning. He was screaming. He told me I wasn't going to work that day," she said.
A lawyer accompanied Zina Haughton at the court hearing. Radcliffe acted as his own attorney, cross-examining her and focusing on the alleged affair.
"Are you having an affair on your husband, Ms. Haughton?" "Objection .. Relevance." "Sustained."
"I have been involved with Zina Haughton for most of my adult life. This is a woman that I love. Things haven't always been the best that they could have been," said Radcliffe Haughton. "But I can stand before the court, stand before God and say that I love her. I love her unconditionally. This situation was brought about by infidelity."
Then Radcliffe Haughton appears stunned when the commissioner told him he had to stay away from Zina for four years.
"Did you say four years? Four years," he said. "Okay, Wow. Wow. Do I deserve that Zee?"
Zina Haughton also testified about 20 years of fear and abuse and explained why before this she had never called the police herself.
"I love my daughter. I loved my husband. I never wanted her to see him taken away and I never wanted him . I never wanted him to be taken away," she said. "But things have gotten so bad, Rad. I just, we need to separate. We need a course before you hurt me. I don't want to die. I just don't want to die."
The Waukesha medical examiner just released the official cause of death a couple hours ago. Zina Haughton died of multiple gunshot wounds. The other two victims were both employees of the spa: 38-year old Mae-Lyn Lind was shot in the head and chest and 35-year-old Cary Robuck died of a gunshot to the neck. Cary had come in to work Sunday on her day off.
Within the hour, the owner of Azana Spa made a public statement. "I hope that if there is any good to come of this it is that we as a community open a serious dialogue about domestic violence. Our sincerest wish is for everyone to heal and for all of us to be able to move forward," said Tami Gemmell, owner, Azana Spa.
The owner says she hopes to rebuild the Azana family once the healing process is complete.
national/world, linda yu
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