John Fitzgerald Gonzalez, 53, called police early Thursday to report that his wife – who filed for divorce just seven weeks ago – was shot in the stomach during a struggle over a gun. Responding cops soon found Nicole Nguyen, 41, on the floor in the garage of her home bleeding from a gunshot wound, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.
Gonzalez first told police he was picking up the couple’s 6-year-old son for school when Nguyen pulled out a gun, sparking a struggle that ended with the gun accidentally discharging, firing one round into her upper-left side.
He was arrested because while police believe a struggle did occur, the suspect’s statements were inconsistent with the crime scene and the evidence.
An arrest report for Gonzalez indicates he later told police he was performing a sexual act on Nicole prior to the subsequent struggle and shooting.
“It is unknown if the sex was actually consensual or if it was coerced by force or threats of force,” the arrest report said.
Gonzalez shot Nguyen in her home they once shared in the southwestern valley of Las Vegas, Nevada on Nov 16
But an arrest report cited by the newspaper indicates Gonzalez claimed the gun went off while performing a sex act on his estranged wife, a version of events detectives found “implausible,” according to the report.
“It is unknown if the sex was actually consensual or if it was coerced by force or threats of force,” the arrest report reads.
Gonzalez, who met officers outside the home with the couple’s uninjured son, told police that Nguyen recently told him she wanted to get back together. Gonzalez also told cops that the couple had an appointment later that day to cancel their divorce proceedings, according to the arrest report.
Gonzalez said he took two guns with him to the home that morning because he had suspicions that the meeting could be an ambush. Gonzalez said Nguyen reached for the gun during the sex act, causing it to fire once as he held the gun and pulled the trigger as Nguyen pulled it toward her.
Authorities who were skeptical of the suspect’s version of events report that they “found his excuse for having brought the gun and keeping it by him during sex implausible”.
Court documents cited by KSNV show that Nguyen told a judge that Gonzalez was very aggressive at times throughout their marriage.
The couple had been married since February 2010, but Nguyen filed for divorce from Gonzalez on September 25. According to the motion, Nguyen was not seeking child support from Gonzalez, who is unemployed.
“I am only concerned about the safety of my son,” she wrote in her divorce filing.
She had asked for sole legal and physical custody of the couple’s son, citing concerns for his safety.
“The father is aggressive and threatening and the judge should order that he be evaluated for anger issues,” Nguyen wrote.
Nguyen claimed Gonzalez took their son out of school for three days in September and would not allow her to see the boy. She later found him at Gonzalez’s mother’s house.
Gonzalez was arrested on one count of murder and taken into custody at the Clark County Detention Center, where he remains held without bail as of Monday, jail records show.
Ngyuen was taken to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead. The cause and manner of her death will be released by the Clark County Coroner’s Office, KLAS reported. that the 41-year-old victim bought the house in March.