Pasadena family lawyers have seen far too many violent headlines caused by custody disagreements in 2011. Bitter custody battles have been at the root of dozens of shootings, kidnappings and assaults around the globe. Sadly, a divorce is at the root of another shooting - and this time the whole thing has been captured on an iPhone.
Last week, grandmother Cheryl Hepner allegedly shot her estranged son-in-law, Salvatore Miglino, outside her South Florida home. Miglino senesed there would be trouble when he went to pick up his three-year-old son from his former mother-in-law's house, so he decided to record the handover with his smartphone.
"I knew something stupid was going to happen, but we're going through a divorce and trying to settle," he told the 911 operator when explaining why he decided to record the exchange.
Miglino set the video to record and placed his iPhone on the front seat of his car. After a heated verbal exchange, Hepner pulled a gun on Miglino and shot him twice in the shoulder and rib cage with a .22 calibre Beretta handgun. The sound of the gun shots can be heard on the video recorded by Miglino's phone, while the shooting itself is unseen in the footage. After the gunshots, Miglino can be heard screaming, "I can't believe you did that! What are you, crazy?"
According to police reports, he then jumped from his car and wrestled the gun out of Hepner's hand before driving away and calling the police. On the recording of his 911 call, Miglino is heard telling the operator, "I'm shot! I took the gun away from her." Hepner also called 911 and told the operator, "Somebody just shot at me." She described Miglino as a "son of a b****" who was "in the middle of a horrible divorce" with her daughter.
Of course, Hepner's story didn't hold water once the police received the footage of the shooting.
"As evidence goes, that was a gem. That absolutely corroborated everything that Mr. Miglino had told detectives," said Dani Moschella, a spokeswoman for the Broward County Sheriff's Office, in an interview with ABC News. An affidavit filed after the incident says that Hepner "did knowingly and intentionally plan to kill and murder Mr. Miglino from a premeditated design."