Tuesday, February 09, 1999

Cause of stabbing/suicide try a mystery




BY SHEILA McLAUGHLIN
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        DEERFIELD TOWNSHIP — For about five years, they lived quietly in an upper middle-class subdivision where few neighbors knew much about them.

        But on Monday, Philip and Terri Cothran's private life on Shadow Ridge Drive was a public curiosity and part of a police investigation into an attempted murder-suicide.

        Warren County sheriff's officials said that Mr. Cothran, a 48-year-old Procter & Gamble employee, attacked his wife with a knife at 7:30 a.m. Sunday. He then went into the garage, they said, started up the family van and tried to asphyxiate himself.

        Police say Mrs. Cothran, 41, stabbed three times in the chest and side and suffering from a punctured lung, escaped. She stumbled to a next door neighbor's house, bleed ing and pleading for help, leaving her sleeping 3-year-old twin daughters behind.

        Sheriff's deputies later found Mr. Cothran overcome by carbon monoxide fumes.

        Monday, as the Cothrans recovered at University Hospital, police were still trying to understand what went awry.

        “We won't know until we sit down and talk to them,” said Lt. Jerry Mays, head of investigations for the Warren County Sheriff's Office.

        As far as detectives could tell, the couple had no history of domestic violence, Lt. Mays said.

        Mr. Cothran was charged late Sunday with felonious assault and domestic violence and will be arraigned in Mason Municipal Court upon his release from the hospital.

        A spokeswowan for the hospital said Mr. and Mrs. Cothran were in fair condition. Mrs. Cothran underwent surgery Sunday, police said.

       



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