Man fatally shoots self after run-in with wife |

Man fatally shoots self after run-in with wife

A 39-year-old Grass Valley man died after he tried to drag his estranged wife out of her home, then shot himself just before police arrived Thursday to check on the commotion reported by neighbors, police said.

“This could have been a lot worse,” Grass Valley police Capt. Rex Marks said Thursday. “We could be talking about a potential homicide/suicide. I don’t know if that was the plan or if he even had a plan.”

Several residents called 911 shortly before midnight Wednesday reporting Shawn Palmer, 39, and his 38-year-old wife were having a fight at their home on the 100 block of Solar Drive in Grass Valley.

Neighbors told police that before they heard the gunfire, Palmer was trying to drag his protesting wife out of the house through the front door, Marks said.

“En route to the call, we learned from additional callers that shots were fired,” Marks said, adding that only one shot had actually been fired. “Prior to officers arriving on scene, (Palmer) had taken his own life with one shot with a handgun to the head.”

Palmer’s .40 caliber semiautomatic handgun had been fully loaded, Marks said.

Palmer’s wife was not hurt, but was taken to the hospital as a precaution, Marks said.

The couple were married but separated, Marks said. The nature of their argument was unknown Thursday, he added.

Police found the couple just inside the home’s front entrance. Fire personnel determined Palmer was dead at the scene, according to police.

There was no indication that drugs or alcohol were a factor in the shooting, Marks said.

Police have no history of contact at the Solar Drive address, Marks said.

“This was an isolated incident,” he said. “Unfortunately it rose to this level so quickly.”


To contact Staff Writer Robyn Moormeister, e-mail or call 477-4236.

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