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Judith HawkeyDEFIANCE COUNTY, OH – The shooting death of a man in 2003, once considered accidental, is now being called a murder orchestrated by Judith Hawkey, a woman who prosecutors say forced her 10-year-old stepson to shoot his father to death.

On Nov. 3, 2003, police responded to an accidental shooting call at the home of Robert Breininger and his then wife, Judith Hawkey. Police would find Robert dead in a bedroom from a single gunshot wound to the head. It was claimed that the shooting was accidental and involved Breininger’s 10-year-old son.

While the death was ruled accidental, a recent investigation has prosecutors charging Hawkey with murder. Prosecutors allege Hawkey tortured and abused the 10-year-old over a three year period, and forced the boy to kill his own father.

No word on what information led to the case being re-opened a decade later, but a grand jury indicted Hawkey this month. “The information on what caused the investigation to be reopened as a homicide is not something I can comment on publicly,” said Defiance County Prosecuting Attorney Morris Murray.

Hawkey is now facing six charges, including felony aggravated murder, four counts of endangering children, and insurance fraud. She’s being held at the Corrections Center of Northwest Ohio on a $3 million bond.

While they may not be releasing the new information that lead to Hawkey’s arrest, it’s not too hard to figure out. Either she talked to someone who turned, or the boy, who would now be 20-years-old, finally came clean with what happened the day he shot his father.

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  • Sean Cudahy

    A guy has a single gunshot wound to the head and they rule in accidental? WTF.

  • Evan Oswald

    defiance county huh?

  • JGo555

    No child should live with what this boy did, I wish he’d turn the gun on her before she could react.

  • Athena

    Happens all the time, actually. Both accidental deaths that have been close to me and due to firearms involved a single bullet to the head (well, one was the upper neck, but still).

  • OutOfBubbleGum

    I’m so confused. In the prior story, a kid shot his parent ’cause he had to do chores while this kid’s chore was to shoot his father.

  • Buffettgirl

    You beat me to it!

  • Buffettgirl

    Wonder what THAT “Oh Shit” moment was like for her… I hope it sucked! Stupid fucking bitch, destroying a kid like that. I’d like to slap that inbred, trashy-looking smirk right off of her face, preferably with a sledgehammer!

  • NY_Mommy

    I’m guessing the boy fessed up. If the boy was really tortured and abused by the stepmonster, like we’ve seen time and time again, I’m almost glad he shot his father for allowing it to happen.

  • Andyman

    Right – that’s why I could never live my life making decisions that required me to constantly look over my shoulder or live in fear. My guess it is like those chills like you get when you see the blue lights behind you – it would be sort of like that but x 100,000. Hope she saved some of that insurance money. Sounds like she is going to need a real good attorney.

  • alphatroll

    Yeah, it’s when there’s MORE than one that I start getting really suspicious of the “accidental” claims… 😉

  • Jessica Stewart

    They were both being forced to do chores, maybe?

  • I don’t know enough about this case to speculate.

  • onlyme356

    The smirk on her face both on her mugshot and in the video looks like she is thinking “and I’d do it again.”

  • meowmeow

    I lived down the street from them when this happened and they said that the boy and dad were cleaning their guns to go hunting and the safety was accidentally turned off and that’s how it happened. I always wondered if something else really happened. This lady always seemed a little off to me.

  • mrskailuakona

    Being gassed to death is TOO humane. The evil stepmom makes her stepson kill his own dad at age 10 depriving himself of having his dad instead he lived nearly a decade with this secret because she raised him. First off the enormous pain he probably broke his silence at age 20 a brave move. The emotional damage this vile woman inflicted on this young man I pray he forgives himself somehow. His father in
    heaven already forgives his son tortured by his wife if only he could.

  • Whisper Wing

    Ohio Woman Sentenced in Husband’s 2003 Slaying

    A woman who compelled her 10-year-old stepson to shoot his father dead in 2003 and say it was an accident was sentenced Thursday to life in prison without parole, a prosecutor said.

    Judith Hawkey, 46, was sentenced in Defiance County Common Pleas Court, prosecutor Morris Murray said. Hawkey, of Oakwood, was convicted last month of aggravated murder, insurance fraud and child endangering stemming from husband Robert Breininger’s death, which was ruled accidental.