A Liberty man accused of murdering his wife told police he was just trying to leave her.
Ervin D. Carroll, 45, is charged with second-degree murder, aggravated assault, and armed criminal action. He told police he and his wife of 23 years, Linda Carroll, had been together for 29 years.
It was 9:41 p.m. Tuesday when Liberty police were called to the apartments in the 300 block of Darrell Court, where the Carrolls lived.
Officers arriving at his apartment said they could hear him as they were climbing the stairs. He was yelling his wife's name over and over.
When they opened the door, they saw him on his knees straddling his wife, who was motionless.
A police statement filed with the charges describes him as "holding (her) arms ... shaking her as if he was trying to get her to talk or wake up."
The person who made the 911 call, a friend of Linda Carroll, described to police how she came to be shot in the foot by the pellets from the single shotgun shell that ended up killing her friend.
She said Linda Carroll invited her upstairs to meet her husband. She said her friend's belongings were piled in the center of the room.
It was the first time the woman had met Ervin Carroll. He had his wife's stuff in a pile, which sparked an exchange between the two.
"What is this?" she said Linda Carroll asked.
She said Ervin Carroll replied, "You need to get out."
She described Linda Carroll continuing to ask, "What is wrong with you? And I bring my friend up here to meet you and you act like this?"
Linda Carroll then apologized to her, she said, which angered Ervin Carroll. Soon after, she said, Ervin Carroll came "storming" down the hall with a shotgun. Linda Carroll grabbed the muzzle, and a shot went off.
Police say Ervin Carroll waived his Miranda Rights. They say he told them the gun went off accidentally and went on to recount his explanation.
He said the break-open-style 10-gauge shotgun was a gift from his father. He explained he had given up on making his wife leave and was grabbing his gun and his boots, the only two things he didn't want to leave behind.
"He stated he had grabbed his boots and gun," the police account of his statement reads, "nothing else, because they were of sentimental value, and he was going to leave since she wouldn't."
The interviewing police sergeant wrote that Ervin Carroll explained, "they hadn't really been arguing, he just 'got tired of her (explicative).'"
The sergeant quotes Ervin Carroll as saying he forgot there "was one in the head," then went on later in the police interview to say that he always keeps his gun loaded "like a normal person."
Police tested the shotgun and indicated it would not fire unless the hammer was pulled back or "cocked."
Neighbors said Ervin Carroll was known in the complex for being hot-headed and confrontational.
Ervin Carroll told police he and his wife have three sons, the youngest of whom is 19 and lives with them. He was not, however, home at the time.
Clay County prosecutors asked for Ervin Carroll's bond to be set at $500,000.
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