PORT ANGELES — A Forks woman who said she suffered through sexual and emotional abuse as a child and multiple traumatic events as an adult has been deemed mentally fit to stand trial for allegedly shooting her husband.
Clallam County Superior Court Judge Lauren Erickson found Kay Ann Beebe, 66, competent to stand trial Friday following issuance of a state Department of Social and Health Services mental health Competency Assessment report.
Beebe, 66, pleaded not guilty at the court hearing to attempted second-degree murder and first-degree assault, both with firearm and domestic violence enhancements, and a reckless endangerment charge, in connection with a through-and-through lower leg injury inflicted on her husband, David E. Beebe, 69.
He told authorities he was shot while walking to get into his log truck at about 3 a.m. Oct. 18 outside the couple’s Calawah Way home east of Forks and did not see the assailant.
Authorities said a spray of 13 bullets from Kay Beebe’s 9 mm handgun punctured her husband’s Peterbilt and a nearby neighbor’s home.
Kay Beebe, David’s wife of about 20 years, has also been charged with reckless endangerment in connection with shooting into the neighbor’s home. One bullet embedded in the siding. Another ricocheted off a living-room hutch before landing on the floor, the neighbor said in a previous interview.
Kay Beebe, suspecting an intruder on her property, said at first she did not know she was shooting at her husband but continued firing, according to her probable cause statement.
“I just kind of went blank, and I just, and I just closed my eyes and kept pulling the trigger,” she said. “I just snapped.”
Kay Beebe remained in the county jail Monday on $500,000 bail.
During her Nov. 10 interview in the jail with state mental health evaluator Amy Sellers, Beebe, a native of Grangeville, Idaho, said she did not report a cousin’s sexual abuse as a child.
She said she was physically and emotionally abused by her parents and also witnessed domestic violence.
She said she was raped three times and did not receive therapy or supportive services “because her family has a culture of pushing feelings down rather than addressing difficult emotions,” according to the report.
Beebe said she suffered head injuries when she was 8 months old and 8 years old, and in 1985 or 1986, in her early 30s, she was ejected during a motor vehicle accident and hospitalized for three to four days, suffering a concussion and not diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury.
She said she voluntarily admitted herself for four weeks into a state psychiatric hospital in Orofino, Idaho.
Beebe was certified to work with children with behavioral disturbances and was a Quillayute Valley School District behavioral intervention specialist for 22 years.
She retired three or four years ago due to having Parkinson’s disease that was diagnosed 13 years ago, according to the report.
Beebe said she had divorced her husband and had been remarried for more than 20 years. She told Sheriff’s Office deputies that they were having financial problems.
The Beebes divorced in 1997, according to court files, before remarrying.
During the interview, Sellers noted Beebe’s thought process to be logical and organized, according to the report.
“She endorsed some symptoms of [post-traumatic stress disorder] primarily intrusive memories, but did not appear to meet full diagnosis criteria at this time,” Sellers wrote.
“Symptoms of PTSD can wax and wane at various times. At other points in time, she may meet full diagnostic criteria. She has no history of mental illness and no diagnosis is offered at this time,” she wrote.
“Ms. Beebe does not have any symptoms of mental illness that would be expected to impact her capacity to understand the proceedings against her or participate in her defense.”
On Friday, Erickson set a status hearing for Jan. 28 and a 10-day trial for March 28 to give her lawyer, Doug Kresl of Port Angeles, time to identify his own expert to evaluate Beebe’s mental state.
“Anytime you are dealing with charges this serious, it is next to impossible to fully investigate and prepare a defense in the standard 60-day time frame,” Kresl said Monday in a text message.
The reckless endangerment charge, related to Beebe allegedly shooting into the neighbors’ home, is a gross misdemeanor. Penalties for the attempted murder and assault charges are Class A felonies punishable up to life imprisonment.
Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at email@example.com.