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By BOB WHITE
ELIZABETHTOWN – While criminal charges have not been filed in connection to Sunday’s shooting death of 38-year-old Army wife Carlotta Mae Peterson, Elizabethtown police confirmed today that the victim's mother-in-law is the only suspected shooter.
With Peterson’s husband, 39-year-old Army Sgt. 1st Class David L. Peterson, returning home on leave Thursday from Army duty in Iraq, police wanted to ensure the husband’s interview with detectives matched information he provided in the 911 call made Sunday to report his wife’s shooting.
Peterson told police he’d been on the porch when he heard the first of the gunshots come from inside the home. He also said his ill mother was in the kitchen with his wife and likely fired the shots.
Until Sunday’s tragic shooting, the Petersons resided with 74-year-old Harietta Stewart, the husband’s mother who suffers from what police describe as severe dementia.
In describing the woman’s state of mind, Elizabethtown Police Department spokesman Virgil Willoughby said in a previous interview that Stewart’s condition had deteriorated so far she had to be carried away from the Petersons’ home when taken in for questioning.
Since being questioned, Stewart has been under the care of Adult Protective Services, Willoughby said.
The husband, who was unable to be reached for comment, was stationed at Fort Knox until last fall, according to Army officials. He is now stationed at Fort Riley, Kan., as part of a military transition unit which has been deployed to Iraq.
Sunday’s fatal shooting was the first homicide in Elizabethtown this year and only the second in 2008 for Hardin County. There were 10 homicide cases in 2007, half of which occurred by the end of May.
Bob White can be reached at (270) 505-1750.