'I Shot the Intruder, But She Was My Wife'

PHOTO John Tabutt shot his fiancee on the even of their wedding day.NY Daily News
Nancy Dinsmore and John Tabutt are shown in this undated file photo. Tabutt shot Dinsmore to death on the eve of their wedding day, thinking that she was an intruder.

The Florida church where John Tabutt was to marry his fiancee this weekend will instead host the woman's funeral following what police say was a "tragic accident." Tabutt, 62, shot his girlfriend Friday night thinking she was an intruder.

On the night before their wedding, Tabbutt frantically called 911 after realizing he had shot his fiancee Nancy Dinsmore, also 62, in their Winter Springs, Fla., home.

"I thought I had an intruder in my house. ... I shot the intruder, but the intruder was my wife," Tabutt told 911.

"We were supposed to get married this Saturday," he said.

Startled by a noise at 3 a.m., Tabutt fired a single shot from his .38 caliber revolver at a figure moving in the hallway.

Dinsmore, who Tabutt thought was sleeping, was shot in the chest.

When asked by the 911 operator if his fiancee was conscious, Tabutt responded: "Honest to God she looks dead."

Seconds later Tabutt told the operator Dinsmore was breathing and he could be overheard telling the dying woman to "hang in there, hang in there."

An ambulance arrived within minutes, but Dinsmore died on the scene.

Police say they believe the shooting was an accident and that Tabutt's grief is genuine.

"The initial investigation and site at the scene does not indicate any type of foul play," said Chief Kevin Brunelle of the Winter Springs Police Department.

Tabutt has not been charged. Dinsmore's funeral service will have to wait until after the police investigation is complete.