Mesa lawyer recalls phone call with wife as she was killed by teen intruder

A Valley lawyer says he was on the phone with his wife when a 14-year-old allegedly killed her.

A Mesa lawyer says he was on the phone with his wife when a 14-year old intruder allegedly killed her. 

“I said 'What’s up babe? All I hear are voices,'” said Ernest Collins Jr.

At 12:19 a.m. Tuesday morning, he received a call from his wife’s phone, but all he heard …

“You came in to the wrong house mother f***er.”

Collins heard his wife TerriLynne confronting an intruder in a trailer on their property in Concho, near Show Low.

“She was actually telling him to step the f*** back or she was going to shoot him,” he said.

Collins says he heard her say the suspect was armed with a knife and wearing a ski mask.

“I was yelling into the phone, 'Shoot this mother f***er TerriLynne, shoot him!'” he said.

He stayed on the phone and at the same time, he called a nearby neighbor to see if they could help her. Then he called 911.

“She was telling him, 'You’re just a kid, you’re just stupid, you’re going to ruin your life, don’t do this,'" Collins said. "He said 'If you’re going to shoot me, shoot me in the f***ing head you b***h' and my wife said 'I’m not going to shoot you in the head,'” said Collins. 

The neighbor went to the home and says the intruder eventually dropped a large knife. Collins believes that’s when his wife let her guard down.

“He lunged at her and they started struggling,” he said.

The call dropped. When he called back, he talked with his daughter Alexa.

“Alexa could hear a gunshot go off. She turned and she could see that he was standing in the doorway and she started running faster,” he said. “I was panicked. I was -- I was shaking.” 

Within minutes, deputies arrived. His wife of 21 years was found dead.

“She could’ve kill that boy,” said Collins. “She had the skills, she had the know-how, she knew exactly what to do... she didn’t kill that boy, because he was a boy.”

“I’ll be honest," he said. "I was hoping he would take that gun and they would put it under his chin and they would not find him alive."

And now all Collins has left are memories.

“She was amazing," he said. "She was just our everything and now she’s gone.”

The 14-year-old is now locked up facing first-degree murder and burglary charges following a statewide manhunt Wednesday.

Collins says no one knew the boy, but it seems like he had been on the property before. Police told him they later found his son’s mountain bike down the road and it appears the hockey stick the boy had may have come from their garage.

© 2017 KPNX-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment