(4-30-22) This past week three murder suspects were arrested in the death of a Virginia man. It involved a divorce, custody of children and the death of a husband by his wife, mom and boyfriend.

The killing this week has shocked the community, but in September of 2001 another shooting in Auglaize County took place…is when Kim Anderson shot her husband Brent eight times ending his life. That incident would put Wapakoneta in the spotlight. But the trial that followed and the verdict shocked everyone.

There are similarities in the two deaths…both couples were in the midst of a divorce and a custody battle over young children.

Below is a description of a 2005 episode of the syndicated TV show ‘Snapped’ that featured the details —

Lima News photo – Luke Vickerey

Blonde, beautiful and ambitious, Kim Anderson never had any trouble finding success or successful men.

In fact, by the time she was 34, Kim had been married to two of them, and had given birth to two children by each. 

Her second husband, Brent Anderson, was a successful divorce attorney from the nearby town of Celina, Ohio.

Shortly after the birth of her fourth child, Kim’s marriage to Brent began to falter. Brent filed for divorce in October of 2000, and a bitter custody battled ensued. 

Just a few days before the divorce was to be final, Kim called 911 and told police that she had shot her husband. Police found Brent lying dead in a bedroom closet with eight bullets in him.

According to Kim, when she confronted her husband about his alleged molestation of their son, he became enraged and lunged at her. She claimed she instinctively picked up her handgun and shot. 

At trial, her attorneys argued she had acted in self-defense. But, prosecutors argued that the shooting was premeditated, pointing out that Kim had never claimed spousal abuse during the divorce proceedings. 

In a controversial verdict, the jury acquitted Kim of all charges in the killing. Brent’s family sued her in civil court and the civil jury didn’t believe she was in imminent danger at the time of the shooting. They ordered her to pay $540,000 to her husband’s family.

After the trial, which was moved from Auglaize County to Defiance County, Anderson said why she didn’t take a plea deal.

In a Toledo Blade story after the trial Anderson said –

“I told him. God isn’t telling me to take a deal. God is telling me to be still and know that I am God. He got me through this completely protected. I still had my children. I never spent a day in jail. I had a full-time job painting. We were never harmed. I was praying for protection even before the shooting and we were protected.”

In the same Blade story Michael Brennan, a law professor at the University of Southern California and a former federal public defender.

“She was fortunate. To prove self-defense, there has to be a reasonable apprehension that your life is in danger. That is a jury determination, and it’s a tough defense to prevail on particularly if the victim is not armed and there’s no prior history of the victim abusing the defendant. She did well to have been acquitted.”

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