Wife, husband remain hospitalized after shooting

The Daily Times staff

AZTEC — The husband and wife involved in a botched murder-suicide both remained hospitalized at San Juan Regional Medical Center on Monday.

Maria Hower, 71, of Cedar Hill, was charged Monday in Aztec Magistrate Court with attempted first-degree murder and aggravated battery against a household member on allegations she shot her husband, Francis "Frank" Hower, in the abdomen with a .357-caliber revolver on Saturday morning.

Her husband, also 71, was further treated for bites, burns and a severe head wound, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.

He told detectives his wife of 50 years, who had sleep deprivation and suicidal thoughts, smashed a vase on his head Saturday morning, the affidavit states. She then burned and bit him during a struggle at the house before shooting him with the revolver, according to the affidavit.

Hospital spokeswoman Laura Werbner said Monday that Frank Hower was in good condition.

Maria Hower allegedly shot herself in the shoulder after the fight, according to the affidavit. She told detectives she wanted to die with her husband.

She was in fair condition on Monday, according to Werbner.

An initial court appearance had not been scheduled, according to court records. Her bond was set at $50,000.