Woman charged with murder in connection with fatal shooting of Clinton police officer

Woman charged with murder in connection with fatal shooting of Clinton police officer

CLINTON, Mo. - A spokesperson with Troop A tweeted out on Wednesday evening that the Henry County Prosecuting attorney has filed charges against a woman connected with the fatal shooting of a police officer. 

ABC 17 previously reported that Officer Ryan Morton and other law enforcement officers were sent to the wrong house while responding to a 911 call made from another town.

Henry County prosecutor Richard Shields charged Tammy Widger with second-degree murder on Wednesday. She had been arrested and charged with delivery of a controlled substance and maintaining a public nuisance shortly after the shooting. Shields said he used the felony murder rule in the case, which allows prosecutors to charge someone with murder if someone dies in the commission of a felony.

"The added charge alleges that the death of Officer Morton occured as a result of Widger perpetrating those felony offenses," Shields said. "The continuing investigation by the Missouri State Highway Patrol revealed additional information that supports the amended charge."

According to public court records, Widger is currently in the Henry County Jail. A judge raised her bond to $100,000 cash only on Wednesday.

Widger allegedly told Clinton police officers she did not call 911 when they arrived at her house on March 6. The officers searched the home anyway, having been dispatched there from a possible disturbance call. The officers encountered James Waters inside, leading to a gun fight that eventually killed Morton and injured two other officers.

A Highway Patrol SWAT team raided the home hours later, where they found Waters dead. Neighbors described hearing officers pleading with Waters in the meantime to let them get Morton from the house, who had survived the shooting.

Morton died while waiting for help to come.

Widger was arrested after investigators searched the home and found methamphetamine inside her purse. She told them Waters paid her bills in exchange for her help selling drugs.

Online court records do not show an attorney listed for Widger. A hearing for her case is scheduled on April 6.


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