Text messages, obscene picture on cellphone prompted Shawnee man to shoot his wife, court records show

A man arrested on a murder complaint in the death of his wife in Shawnee March 21 called a friend and confessed to shooting her after he found text messages and a photo of another man's genitals on her cellphone, according to a probable cause affidavit filed by police.
BY BRYAN DEAN bdean@opubco.com Modified: March 27, 2013 at 9:27 pm •  Published: March 27, 2013
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— Cathy Byus' husband told a friend he killed her after finding text messages from another man on her cellphone along with a photo of the man's genitals, according to a police affidavit.

Justin Byus, 25, was arrested on a murder complaint after police got a call from the friend March 21 and found the body of Cathy Byus, 35, in the couple's house.

She died of multiple gunshot wounds, according to the state medical examiner's office.

Byus did not speak to police. His attorney, Tommy Adler, said Wednesday Byus is consumed with grief.

“I don't think this is going to be a question of who done it. I think it's going to be a question of why,” Adler said. “I've known Justin for many years. I know this isn't the kind of thing he is capable of in his right mind.”

Adler said there “will be a time and place” for Justin Byus' side of the story to come out.

“At this point in time, I'm advising him to remain silent until we've gathered all the information available.”

Court documents

According to the police affidavit, Justin Byus spent much of that night with a friend, Thomas Chandler. Chandler lived with the Byuses for about a month and said the couple fought often but their fights were always “pretty tame.”

Chandler told police he had dinner with the couple at their home about 6:30 p.m. March 20 and was with Justin Byus that evening. The couple had an argument shortly before Chandler and Justin Byus left to go to a strip club in Oklahoma City.

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