UPDATE: Athens woman kills husband in apparent self-defense - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Athens woman kills husband in apparent self-defense

Posted: Updated:
Source: McMinn County Sheriff Source: McMinn County Sheriff
Robert Vann Marshall (Source: McMinn Co. Sheriff) Robert Vann Marshall (Source: McMinn Co. Sheriff)

A domestic dispute Saturday ending with a fatal gunshot is still under investigation in McMinn County.

It happened just before 2:00 p.m. Saturday afternoon at a home off of Velma Road. McMinn Sheriff Joe Guy said a woman shot her husband out of apparent self-defense.

Authorities said the victim, Robert Marshall, violated a protective order he was served just a couple of hours before he was shot.

Police said Marshall was irate, suicidal and armed Saturday morning. He was also apparently threatening his kids and his wife, Melissa Marshall.

McMinn deputies stopped Robert Marshall in his car outside of a local motel and found a gun and prescription pills on him.

While booking him in jail, deputies found Melissa had filed an order of protection against her husband that hadn't been served.

"When they found out there was an order, they went to her residence, got her copy, made a copy and then served him off of that. So we made sure that once we got it, he was going to be served," said Sheriff Guy.

Guy said Marshall legally knew he was not to come in contact with his wife, but he didn't listen. Just minutes after he bonded out of jail, he headed back to their house.

"His wife called 911 and was telling our dispatchers that he was trying to break into the residence. So as officers were in route to render aid, he made his way into the residence. She retreated into the back bedroom, and at some point fired a shot and he was killed," said Guy.

Melissa Marshall is not facing charges because the sheriff's department believes she acted out of self-defense. The District Attorney will also investigate to see if the case will go to a Grand Jury.

Sheriff Guy said a protective order didn't stop Robert Marshall, but women who feel they're abused should look into filing one.

"It's just a piece of paper. It's just a court order, and not everyone will abide by it, and many times they don't. But it's rare, at least in our county, that we see a violent end like this to a situation like that," he said.

Sheriff Guy said a protective order doesn't convict someone for domestic abuse. It tells the two parties to separate until they can go before a judge.

He also recommended women in abusive situations start the process the first time the abuse happens.

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