Local News

Hoke County Wife May Not Be Charged With Husband's Murder

Posted May 21, 2003 10:42 a.m. EDT

— Alton and Susan Mozingo shared a home in rural Hoke County, but deputies say it was also the place where a pattern of domestic violence had taken place for years and recently took a turn for the worse.

Susan Mozingo told investigators they were fighting over money Sunday morning when Alton began beating her over the head with a revolver. When authorities arrived at the home, they found Alton dead and lying face up inside the home, shot once in the upper torso.

"Her statement was she was trying to stop the beating. She was not aware she shot him. It was not her intention to kill him. She just wanted the abuse to stop," said Hoke County Chief Deputy Troy McDuffie.

Detectives say one time, Susan did confide in her doctor and an attorney about the abuse, but throughout the years, she never went to police or a domestic violence shelter for help. She told authorities she feared her husband would lose his six-figure income at Fort Bragg where he had top secret clearance as a civilian network engineer.

"As a society, we expect more from people making more. We think bad things can't happen in their families and it is happening and embarassing to them," domestic violence director Crystal Black said.

Hoke County investigators said it appears it was a case of self-defense. Authorities say they are still investigating, but say it is likely the former teacher will not be charged with murder.

The Sheriff's Office expects to turn over all the evidence to the district attorney later this week. The district attorney will ultimately decide if charges will be filed.