Wife exonerated in husband's death says she was 'demonized' by police, media

HOUSTON – A woman who has been exonerated from a murder charge after she was accused of killing her husband spoke out Wednesday about her experience. 

On Feb. 3, Tu Thien Huynh, 29, was accused of shooting and killing her husband after authorities responded to reports of a suicide call. 

When officers arrived at the couple's house around 4:10 p.m. in the 10400 block of Newpark Drive, they questioned Huynh for a short time before taking her into custody. 

Investigators originally thought they had found suspicious evidence and labeled the case a homicide, which is why they took Huynh to jail, but after further investigation, they found that Steven Hafer had committed suicide. 

"I wish law enforcement would have prioritized finding facts instead of demonizing me," Huynh said.

WATCH: Wife exonerated in husband's death speaks out about experience

“Investigators make tough decisions at crime scenes. After further review of the evidence, the medical examiner has concluded this was a suicide, not homicide. Based on the evidence, we filed a motion that was signed by a judge, and the charge has been dismissed. Whatever first impressions may be, ultimately, decisions are based on the evidence," Trial Bureau Chief for the Harris County District Attorney’s Office David Mitcham said. 

Huynh said during her news conference Wednesday that officers were careless and would not let her speak to her lawyer when they took her into custody. 

"I was not given the presumption of innocence. Law enforcement treated me like a murderer from day one. I was called heartless and unfeeling simply because I was in shock," Huynh said.  

Huynh said she was upset that she was torn from her daughter and was unable to mourn her husband's death.

"I do not know specifically what drove Steven to do what he did but, I pray he is now in peace," Huynh said.

Along with being upset that she was poorly treated, Huynh said her reputation was soiled and because of that, she was fired from her job as a nurse at the medical center. 

"I think they (officers) should have had more people looking. They should have had individuals that intentionally took a different view to argue and discuss the evidence they had," Huynh's lawyer, David Armbruster, said.

Huynh's lawyer said they might seek compensation for everything she has lost after her husband's death.


Download the Click2Houston news app in your app store to stay up-to-date with the latest news while you're on the go.

Sign up for KPRC 2 newsletters to get breaking news, sports, entertainment, contests and more delivered straight to your email inbox.