Patton murder trial is now underway
The jury trial for an Exeter woman accused of killing her estranged boyfriend in December of 2005 began this week in Barry County Circuit Court.
Adella Fae Patton, 48, stands charged with second degree murder and armed criminal action in connection with the shooting death of 45-year-old Kevin Madison, of Exeter.
Judge J. Edward Sweeney is presiding over the trial, which is expected to last throughout the week. Jury selection was conducted on Monday with witnesses for the state testifying on Tuesday.
Patton is represented by Cassville attorneys John Lewright and Robert Foulke. Barry County Prosecutor Johnnie Cox and Assistant Prosecutor Pat Sullivan are handling the state's case against Patton, who has been free on bond since being released from Fulton State Mental Hospital in December of 2006.
Patton's trial was delayed when her attorneys raised the issue of mental competency. On March 21, 2006, Patton was transferred to Fulton State Hospital after being committed to the custody of the Missouri Division of Mental Health for care and treatment.
She was released from treatment on Aug. 25, 2006, after mental health professionals decided Patton was competent to stand trial.
Patton is accused of shooting Madison once in the head outside her home on Dec. 11, 2005. When officers arrived at the scene of the shooting, Madison's dead body was discovered in the yard and Patton was found holding a rag over a wound on Madison's forehead.
According to an affidavit of probable cause filed by then Barry County Detective Robert Evenson, Patton and Madison began arguing outside Patton's residence and then Madison, according to Patton, "clocked" her. Patton then told the detective that she went inside her home and retrieved a revolver she had purchased to allegedly protect herself against Madison.
Evenson's affidavit then states that Patton went outside with the gun and fired a round over Madison's head. When he made a move toward her, Patton said she fired another round, but this time, the bullet struck Madison in the forehead.
Lewright has argued that Patton was defending herself from Madison, who had served prison time for assaulting her in the past. Cox has witnesses who heard Patton threaten to shoot Madison prior to Dec. 11, 2005. Cox said Patton was angry with Madison for travelling to Arkansas to spend time with another woman.