Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu says a woman shot and killed at the hands of her same sex partner appears to be domestic violence. Babeu says 54 year old Michelle Butler shot and killed her lover, 53 year old Kim Shelton at their Red Rock home Monday morning around 11.

Neighbors called 911 after seeing Shelton collapse and die on the sidewalk. Once deputies arrived, they tried but failed to revive her. They then used an intercom system to call out Butler, who emerged holding a rooster. After commands to drop the animal, she was arrested without further incident.

The Sheriff says the couple had been together for 15 years, and there’s no record of prior police visits to the home. But he says the lack of a call history means nothing since Shelton’s daughter says there had been fighting and abuse but it was never reported. Babeu says the tragedy is a cautionary tale to all domestic violence victims to call police and not be silent about the abuse they’re suffering.

–Barbara Villa