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Man who reported wife’s death as suicide arrested

January 22, 2022 GMT

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — A Spokane man who reported his wife’s death as a suicide has been arrested on suspicion of murder.

Ayers, 55, appeared in court Friday after he was arrested on suspicion of second-degree domestic violence murder Thursday, The Spokesman-Review reported.

Documents said Ayers called 911 at 11 p.m. Tuesday to report Shannon Ayers had shot herself in the head. Deputies responding to the couple’s home found him in the bedroom standing next to his wife.

She had a gunshot wound to her head and was holding a 9mm semiautomatic pistol in her right hand, documents said. She died at a hospital early Wednesday.

Dean Ayers told deputies that he and his wife had been arguing before she shot herself with the pistol he keeps under his pillow. Ayers said he was in bed when she shot herself. He told deputies he did not move the gun, according to court documents.

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An autopsy of Shannon Ayers revealed the bullet entered her head on the left side and exited on the right. The gun was held between 8 and 12 inches from her head when it was fired, according to the medical examiner.

Dean Ayers made conflicting statements in a later police interview, according to court documents.

Ayers remains in the Spokane County Jail on a $1 million bond. It wasn’t immediately known if he has a lawyer to comment on his behalf.