High Drug Costs Drove Man to Shoot His Sick Wife

Confronted with mounting medication costs, a man allegedly resorted to shooting his ill wife.

Confronted with mounting medication costs, a man allegedly resorted to shooting his ill wife.

Police received a call around 12:50 PM on May 16, 2016, about a disturbance, St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Garry Wilson said.

When deputies arrived at a Florida home, a man named William Hager said there wasn’t really a disturbance. Hager told deputies he shot his wife earlier that day, and she was in the bedroom.

Hager’s wife, Carolyn, was ill, and the husband said he was having difficulty keeping up with the cost of her medications.

“He felt that this was his best course of action to resolve the situation,” Wilson said in a news conference.

Hager, 86, was married to Carolyn, 78, for more than 50 years, TCPalm reported.

Police said Hager shot his wife in the head with a .32-caliber revolver while she was sleeping. Then, he had a cup of coffee and told family members what he had done.

According to Hager, Carolyn was “always in a lot of pain,” Wilson said in the news conference. The chief deputy also noted that Hager showed remorse during his interviews with police.

“He was perfectly clear on that he was going to be arrested and go to jail, but again, he felt that this is where it had gotten to him and this was his course of action,” TCPalm reported Wilson saying. “He showed emotion, and he was very clear that he was out of options in his mind.”

Hager allegedly told police that Carolyn expressed a desire to die, but she never explicitly asked her husband to kill her. For several days, he thought about shooting her, TCPalm reported.

Neighbors of the Hagers described Carolyn as an avid gardener, but they hadn’t seen her out working in the yard lately.

Hager, who has no previous criminal history, was charged with first-degree murder, TCPalm reported.