Arizona

The following vignettes describe the circumstances for killings not ruled self-defense by private individuals with permits to carry concealed handguns. The incidents below all occurred in Arizona. The descriptions include the current, known status of any charges filed against the concealed carry killer as reported by news sources as well as noting instances where the perpetrator committed suicide.

The Violence Policy Center welcomes any new information regarding the status of any case (with verifiable source(s)). Use this link to contact the VPC: http://www.vpc.org/contact.htm.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Jennifer Smith PENDING

Date: April 23, 2016
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On April 23, 2016, concealed handgun permit holder Jennifer Smith allegedly shot and killed her estranged husband Paul Smith, following days of conflict between the couple.  In March 2016, Paul Smith traveled from Utah to Arizona in an attempt to reconcile with his wife.  In the days leading up to the shooting, Paul and Jennifer Smith fought with each other and their relatives.  On April 19, the Arizona Department of Child Safety took custody of Smith’s children, after which she posted a series of Facebook updates accusing the state of illegally taking her children.  According to Jennifer’s mother, Jennifer and Paul Smith carried handguns, and were desperate to find their kids, who had been placed with a family friend.  On April 23, Jennifer’s mother called police and asked for protection, citing her daughter’s sleep-deprived paranoia.  That same afternoon, Paul Smith moved out of the couple’s apartment and checked into a hotel.  On the night of the 23rd, Jennifer called Paul, saying her car was out of gas.  Paul took his mother’s car and went to pick up Jennifer.  He called his mother twice from the scene complaining that Jennifer was agitated and he couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her car.  Jennifer allegedly fired six shots at Paul, hitting him twice, once in the leg and once in the chest.  Jennifer then drove away in Paul’s mother’s car.  Police arrested Jennifer after a traffic stop a few miles away.  She was carrying a 40 caliber handgun and admitted shooting Paul, saying she was afraid of her husband and thought he was getting a gun out of the trunk of the car.  According to authorities Paul had no weapon, and Jennifer had no sign of injuries when she was arrested.  She was charged with second degree murder.

Source: “Husband, wife in Gilbert shooting lived in turmoil; DCS took children away days before,” Arizona Republic, May 1, 2016.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Michael Voden CONVICTED

Date: November 9, 2013
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On November 9, 2013, concealed handgun permit holder Michael Voden, 72, shot and killed his neighbor Randy Burnett following a dispute over a dog. According to news reports, Burnett entered Voden’s yard to retrieve his dog Scooter who was running around Voden’s yard and barking. Voden called 911 after hearing the dog, but despite the 911 dispatcher urging him to stay in his house, Voden went outside to confront Burnett. According to the 911 call, Voden was heard saying, “Get this, get this [expletive] dog out of my yard right now.” Voden shot Burnett four times in the chest and back during the confrontation. Burnett’s wife testified that her husband was not threatening Burnett and had his hands up in the air when Voden shot him. Voden claimed Burnett was walking toward him as though he intended to overpower him and take his Glock pistol. On May 29, 2015, Voden was found guilty of manslaughter and faces a sentence of seven to 21 years in prison.

Source: “Voden convicted of manslaughter,” Payson Roundup, May 29, 2015; “Voden Murder Trial Court Date Det,” Payson Roundup, September 2, 2014; “Payson man Michael Alan Voden accused of killing neighbor over dispute about dog,” abc15.com, November 20, 2013.

 

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Thomas Bodine PENDING

Date: June 15, 2012
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
On June 15, 2012, concealed handgun permit holder Thomas Bodine, 67, allegedly shot and killed his 64-year-old wife as she was sleeping. Bodine told police that he arrived at his home to find his wife dead with a pillow over her face and a gun in her hand. Yet, the police investigation quickly found numerous inconsistencies in his story, including the fact that wife had no blood on her hands which would indicate she was not shot at close range, ruling out suicide. Bodine, who was diagnosed with clinical depression approximately two years earlier, was arrested on suspicion of first degree murder.

Source: “Glendale man accused in wife’s shooting death,” Tucson Citizen, June 19, 2012.

Concealed Handgun Permit Holder: Candice Lynne Wright CONVICTED

Date: September 2, 2007
People Killed: 1


Circumstances:
 On September 2, 2007, concealed handgun permit holder Candice Lynne Wright shot and killed her 73-year-old husband with a Kel-Tec .32 handgun. Wright frequently carried a .32 handgun at her side and she had fired a handgun during an incident outside her home a few weeks before the murder. Wright claimed that she left her husband to go the grocery store to obtain more steak for their dinner and was at the store for 35 to 45 minutes before returning home to find him dead, when she called 911. Video from the grocery store showed that Wright was only in the store for three minutes. Trial testimony revealed that Wright’s relationship with her husband was marked by conflict, “stemming at least in part from Wright’s chronic alcoholism.” Wright’s
husband’s daughter testified that Wright threw a drink in the victim’s face on Father’s Day. Wright was found guilty of second degree murder and sentenced to 18 years in prison. In July 2011, an appeals court upheld the conviction.

Source: State of Arizona v. Candice Lynne Wright, Court of Appeals of Arizona, Division One, Department B, July 7, 2011.