HOUSTON - A Houston nurse is speaking out after she was wrongfully charged with her husband’s murder.
Tu Thien Hyunh said she came home to find her husband, Steven Hafer, dead from a gunshot wound in February.
During a press conference at her attorney’s office Wednesday, Hyunh told reporters she was in shock. Then to make matters worse, she was arrested and charged with his murder hours later.
“From the very beginning, I was attacked left and right. I was accused of the most heinous acts. I was not allowed to mourn Steven’s passing. I was torn from my daughter who had just lost her father,” said Hyunh. “I wish law enforcement had prioritized the finding of facts instead of an easy target to demonize.”
It wasn’t until early April that medical examiners ruled the death a suicide, clearing Hyunh’s name.
Police Chief Art Acevedo released the following statement:
At the time of the incident, homicide detectives informed the District Attorney’s Office of the facts in this case. Based on those facts, charges were filed on Ms. Huynh. Subsequent to the initial filing, detectives uncovered additional information. The DA’s office was notified and legal remedies were taken to appropriately dispose of the charges. Based on the physical evidence located at the scene, the department stands by the District Attorney’s Office initial filing decision. Despite the aforementioned evidence, it is still regrettable charges were initially filed. However, the due diligence of our homicide detectives and the DA’s office ultimately led to the appropriate disposition of this case. We extend our condolences to Ms. Huynh, her extended family and friends.
Hyunh said she had already lost her job as a nurse and her reputation, on top of the loss of her husband.
“In my opinion, they should have had more people looking. They should have individuals that intentionally took a different view to argue and to discuss the evidence they had. I think if they had done that, they would have said, ‘Wait a second, this isn’t a murder’,” said David Armbruster, her attorney.
Armbruster said his client has not decided whether she’ll pursue legal action because of the wrongful accusation.
The Harris County District Attorney’s Office sent the following statement after dropping the charges on April 5:
Investigators make tough decisions at crime scenes. After further review of the evidence, the medical examiner has concluded this was a suicide, not homicide. Based on the evidence, we filed a motion that was signed by a judge and the charge has been dismissed. Whatever first impressions may be, ultimately decisions are based on the evidence.