Affidavit details domestic problems leading to Wichita murder

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WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

A court document released Friday highlights a couple's domestic problems leading up to the moment a woman allegedly shot her boyfriend to death last month.

Crystal Rotramel, 30, is charged with second-degree murder in the death of Richard Hamm Jr., on February 5. Officers were called to a shooting at Kellogg and Meridian and arrived to find Hamm dead in the passenger seat of an SUV. He had been shot in the neck. Rotramel was sitting on the curb at the time. 

An arrest affidavit states the two had been together about six months. Shorty after the shooting, a driver who observed the SUV stopped and exited her vehicle. She approached Rotramel who asked for help and for someone to call 911.

The driver told investigators Rotramel started saying, "He's shot, he's shot, he's shot!"

The driver asked Rotramel who shot him and she said, "I told him I'd shoot him if he didn't leave me alone, so I shot him."

Police arrived a short time later.

At the home the couple shared, officers located an open front door.

"While clearing the residence, signs of a disturbance were observed," the affidavit states. "Just inside the front door there is a hallway with a two foot wide wood table that had broken glass on the table and floor just below the table. There was a brown liquid, possibly coffee, on the wall behind the shelf. Laying [sic] in the front yard was an Apple brand cellular telephone that was face down. In the street in front of the residence, there was a multi-colored coin purse, a broken iPod and a broken piece from a metal watch."

Rotramel told a Wichita Police Department Detective that Hamm had physically abused and threatened her many times during their relationship.

On the morning of February 5, Rotramel sent a text message to her son. She said Hamm started accusing her of cheating on him, so she told him she was done with the relationship and was going back to her husband, the affidavit states.  

Rotramel said Hamm tried to physically restrain her as she packed her belongings into her vehicle. She said the last items she grabbed was a handgun she bought approximately two months prior and a jacket of Richard's that he was wearing when he committed a crime approximately a week prior.

"Crystal stated when she bought the gun she fired it and was instructed. Crystal said she knew she was supposed to keep her finger off the trigger and on the side of the gun," the affidavit reads. "Crystal ran to the vehicle and unlocked it causing all of the doors to unlock. She got into the vehicle and so did Richard. Crystal stated she started to drive off north on Meridian at a high rate of speed with the gun in the driver's door pocket. While she was driving Richard told her to give him the jacket and he would get out of the vehicle. Crystal said she threw the jacket out of the window and Richard became angry. Richard told her he was going to push her out of the vehicle and even reached over approximately two times trying to open her door. Crystal said she grabbed the gun with her left hand and held it in the air threatening to shoot him if he didn't stop. Richard told her to shoot him multiple times and kept pushing her towards the door. When they arrived at Kellogg and Meridian, she conducted a u-turn to get onto Kellogg and Richard put the car in park while she was driving causing the vehicle to stop. Right after the vehicle stopped, she heard a shot and observed Richard with a gunshot wound to his head. Crystal did not remember pointing the gun at Richard or having her finger on the trigger when Richard was shot."

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