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North Strabane man charged with fatally shooting wife

| Wednesday, March 26, 2014, 7:00 a.m.
Police charged Scott A. Edmonds, 50, of North Strabane with homicide in the shooting death Tuesday of his wife, Louise M. Weis-Edmonds.

North Strabane police said they suspected another incident of alcohol-fueled domestic violence was probably playing out when they responded to a report of gunfire in the home Scott Alan Edmonds shared with his wife, Louise.

But this time was different.

When officers arrived about 8:45 p.m. Tuesday, they found Edmonds, 50, cradling the body of his wife, Louise M. Weis-Edmonds, 49, on the dining room floor of their one-story townhouse on Victoria Drive.

She had a gunshot in the head.

Officers on Tuesday arrested Edmonds, who remains in the Washington County Jail without bail on charges of homicide and tampering with evidence. No attorney for Edmonds was listed in court paperwork.

Police said Edmonds hid the .380-caliber handgun police suspect was used in the killing inside a pool table pocket.

Officers found a spent shell casing and a live round of that caliber on the dining room floor near the body, Detective John Wybranowski said.

No one else was found inside the home, and there were no signs of forced entry, police said. A neighbor told investigators that Edmonds came to his door and asked for help before police arrived.

As in previous cases, officers said they think he was intoxicated.

“We do believe there was evidence he was under the influence, that he'd been drinking,” Wybranowski said.

A member of Weis-Edmonds' family declined to comment.

“We were familiar with him from previous cases,” Wybranowski said.

North Strabane police had arrested Edmonds, a home health care physical therapist, three times for domestic violence-related crimes since 2001. The incidents involved two women: a previous girlfriend and his wife. Investigators noted in each case that Edmonds had been drinking.

Weis-Edmonds called police just before 10 p.m. Feb. 22 and reported that her husband attacked her after she came home from caring for her mother, who has Alzheimer's disease, a criminal complaint stated.

Edmonds smashed his wife's cellphone and threw her to the ground, pulled rings from her fingers and bit her on the arm, police reported.

Police arrested him on charges of simple assault and harassment. A hearing is scheduled in July before Washington County Magistrate Jay Weller, who will hold a preliminary hearing in the homicide case on April 9.

In April 2011, Weis-Edmonds called police and reported that her husband punched her in the left eye and strangled her in an argument over her job résumé. She told police then that her husband had weapons in the house.

Police arrested Edmonds and charged him with assault.

Another woman who lived with him in the same Victoria Court residence called police in March 2001 and reported that Edmonds kicked her and pressed a knife to her face, causing a small cut to her right cheek. The woman told police that the incident happened after he drank a fifth of vodka while playing Scrabble with her and two friends.

Police arrested Edmonds and put him in a holding room, where he banged on a window, spit on the walls and threw his shoes, officers noted in arrest records.

State police in 2003 arrested him on drunken driving charges.

An online profile shows that Weis-Edmonds graduated from Boston University's Carroll School of Management and worked in the legal services field, including stints at Pittsburgh law firms as manager of Rothman Gordon and a legal assistant at Weis & Weis.

Jason Cato is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7936 or jcato@tribweb.com.

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