A 25-year-old Gillette woman faces charges of attempted second-degree murder and aggravated burglary after allegedly stabbing her ex-boyfriend with scissors after an argument escalated early Monday morning.
Gillette police officers responded to a call about a crying woman and child standing outside an unidentified location, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the case. The woman tried to hide when she saw someone calling police, but was found and later identified as Karissa Bowling.
Bowling was “covered in blood” when she was found by police and claimed her ex-boyfriend “held her hostage,” wrote Sgt. Eric Dearcorn in the affidavit.
Bowling claimed her former boyfriend, identified in the affidavit as Nolan Barkey, attacked her after they argued when he came home drunk from a local bar at about 2:15 a.m. Although they had broken up, Bowling said she and her 2-year-old daughter were staying with Barkey.
When he came home, Bowling said that “he became upset over a phone charger and pushed her up against a wall,” according to the affidavit. He allegedly “pressed his thumbs against her neck causing pressure and ‘choking me out.’”
After he told her to kill herself and “end it all,” Bowling said she grabbed a silver handgun “as if she were going to end her life,” the affidavit says, adding that Bowling said she never had an intention to harm herself, but instead wanted Barkey to stop antagonizing her.
Instead, he took the handgun from her, pointed it and yelled.
Bowling said she feared for her life “and grabbed (a) silver pair of scissors,” the affidavit says. “A physical altercation ensued between her and Nolan. During the struggle, she believed she cut or stabbed him on the left side of his body, and cut herself on the finger in the process.”
Barkey was taken to the emergency room at Campbell County Memorial Hospital with a laceration on the left side of his torso. He said he was stabbed, Dearcorn wrote in the affidavit.
Barkey did tell police about a video recording of the incident on his cellphone, which was later seized from his home as evidence.
After police got a search warrant, they searched Barkey’s home and found a pair of silver scissors in the bathroom, a Kimber 45 pistol on the master bed, a gray T-shirt with blood on it and droplets of blood on the carpet and hallway wall, the affidavit says.
After the search, Dearcorn wrote that he returned to the home at the request of Barkey to get the sweatshirt he was wearing at the time. Dearcorn asked if he wanted to make a statement, and this time Barkey said he did.
Barkey said that Bowling and her daughter has spent Saturday night and Sunday at his house and that they were still there Sunday evening when he returned from an errand.
“They waited outside as Nolan does not allow Karissa in his house while he is gone,” according to the affidavit.
At about 9 p.m., he decided to go to a bar and told Bowling she needed to leave. Her belongings were outside and he locked the home and left.
When he returned at about 2:30 a.m., Bowling “appeared from the side of his garage,” the affidavit says. “She still had her daughter with her and they were both freezing. Nolan felt sorry for the child and told Karissa to stay outside and call someone for a ride, but her daughter could come inside and warm up.”
Barkey said that Bowling claimed her phone was dead and that when he opened the door she “pushed her way in and would not leave,” according to the affidavit. He gave her a phone charger and told her again to get out. At one point during their argument, Bowling punched him in the throat, he said.
Contrary to Bowling’s account, Barkey said he never got physical with her, that she threatened to “blow her brains out” and ran toward the bedroom where he keeps a pistol. They struggled over the gun, which he got away from her, and he retreated to the bathroom.
Barkey said Bowling followed him and tried to hit him, the affidavit says. He put his arm up to block the blows and she hit him below his left shoulder blade toward the back of his torso. He didn’t know what she hit him with, but “it hurt him really bad.”
He was gasping for air and then realized he had been stabbed with a pair of scissors, according to the affidavit. “He pointed the gun at Karissa and told her to get out of his house repeatedly; however, she would not leave.”
She eventually left through the garage.
When Dearcorn asked Barkey about the videos on his phone, he gave permission to search the cellphone.
The first video, recorded at 3:13 a.m., shows Bowling with her child wrapped in blankets arguing with Barkey, who repeatedly tells her to get out of his house, the affidavit says. About 5 minutes into the video, Bowling states, “I am going to blow my brains out” and runs toward the bedroom. He follows, saying, “Don’t touch my f------- gun.”
After they struggle in the bedroom, the video cuts out, Dearcorn wrote in the affidavit.
In the next video at 3:19 a.m., Barkey is heard “struggling for breath saying get out of my house,” according to the affidavit. The silver scissors are on the bathroom floor. “The video pans up and shows Karissa with bloody hands saying, ‘I slipped, I didn’t mean to, please don’t press charges, I cannot go to prison and I am sorry.’”
Barkey points the gun at her and repeats his demand that she “get out of my house,” the affidavit says. “All through this video the child is running around crying and screaming. Karissa is pleading with Nolan trying to help him.”
Bowling was arrested because she remained in the house after being told to leave numerous times, and during that time armed herself and “knowingly and recklessly caused serious bodily injury to Nolan Barkey by stabbing him, committing an aggravated burglary,” the affidavit says. He was stabbed in the back near the left shoulder blade and the scissors “nearly penetrated his diaphragm and lung."
Considering the interviews and all the evidence, and based on the wound, Dearcorn wrote that Bowling “attempted to kill Nolan Barkey purposely and maliciously without premeditation.”
At her first appearance in court, Bowling told the judge she’s not a flight risk and poses no threat to the community.
“I never hurt anyone,” she said.
Judge Paul S. Phillips set her bond at $100,000 cash or surety and set a May 19 date for a preliminary hearing. If convicted, attempted second-degree murder carries penalties of 20 years to life in prison and up to $10,000 in fines, while aggravated burglary is five to 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.