Wife's 911 call played during preliminary hearing in shooting death of JPSO Sgt.

Wife's 911 call played during preliminary hearing in shooting death of JPSO Sgt.
Updated: Aug. 6, 2018 at 9:08 PM CDT
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JEFFERSON PARISH, LA (WVUE) - The prosecution says Shantel Wagner's story is not lining up. The defense says it's been her story the whole time.

JPSO Sgt. Troy Smith's death was originally investigated as a suicide, but Monday's preliminary hearing revealed more about what happened that night.

Wagner made the 911 call Father's Day night after her husband, Smith, was shot in the head. His death was originally investigated as a suicide, but Wagner would be arrested weeks later for second-degree murder.

She sat in court listening to the call again during Monday's preliminary hearing.

Dispatcher: Ma'am? Ma'am?

Wagner: Yes, sir?

Dispatcher: Ok ma'am, I need you to go up to him. I need you to tell me if he's still breathing.

Wagner: He's breathing, but he's barely breathing sir. He's bleeding everywhere.

A sometimes vocal Wagner could be heard on the line as a dispatcher tried to calm her down before first responders arrived.

Wagner: *crying*.

Dispatcher: Ma'am? Ma'am is he still breathing?

Wagner: Yea... *crying*.

Dispatcher: He is?

Wagner: Yes...

The lead investigator testified in court that Wagner's account of the night had inconsistencies and did not align with scene reconstruction.

Dispatcher: Where is the gun ma'am?

Wagner: The gun is on the bed.

There were several references made in court that Smith and Wagner's marriage was in trouble. The investigator said surveillance video supports that the two were arguing that night. And while one witness claimed Wagner told her she shot her husband, another neighbor testified Wagner told her, "I didn't do it...I think he was trying to scare me to stay."

Defense attorney Leo Palazzo said despite different testimonies, there's only one story.

"I believe she doesn't know what she saw other than the fact he shot himself - if it was against his head, a foot away from his head…She's been consistent from day one saying they were arguing, he was drinking, he was on pain medication, he was depressed, he had PTSD and he was broke," Palazzo said.

Wagner used to work for Palazzo as a secretary at his law firm, and in knowing both her and Smith, he says this case is personal for him.

"This is me telling you the truth. I know both people, and it's very hard for me to believe he did it. It's hard for me to believe she did it. But when you look at the evidence, when you look at his own words, he did what he said, and I tell you it broke my heart, it broke my heart," Palazzo said.

Two people are expected to testify Tuesday with a motions hearing.

Anticipated in that is a bond reduction motion.

Currently Wagner is being held on a $500,000 bond.

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