Former Port Director Accused of Shooting Wife to Death

Former Port Director Accused of Shooting Wife to Death

POSTED: Monday, January 19, 2009 - 12:06pm

UPDATED: Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 12:32pm

A former U.S. Customs and Border Protection Port Director is accused of gunning down his wife in their own bedroom. He is now in police custody. It was 48-year-old Joseph Mongiello who called police to report the crime. Mission Police say Mongiello told the 911 operator he had killed his wife after a verbal argument.

Mission police and several investigators collected evidence and re-created the crime scene. Neighbors are shocked. They say the neighborhood has never gone through something like this. They’re saddened about the situation and today, they are in mourning. Brenda Nelson knew the family for years. They only lived a few houses down from each other, and although they lived so close, Nelson said she didn't know what happened until police arrived at the scene.

“We were up but we didn't hear anything.”

Mongiello made the call around 11:00 p.m. last night. Spokesman for Mission Police, Jody Tittle, says the 48-year-old was outside waiting for police to arrive. Once at the police department, Mongiello told investigators he and 46-year-old, Lindsay Tall, had a verbal dispute but then turned violent. He shot his wife about 6 times with his personal .357 magnum revolver. The cause of the argument is unknown at this time. Sergeant Tittle says there is no previous history of any kind of family violence at the residence.

“He’s been relatively calm but he knows what he did was wrong. He’s mentioned it a few times.”At this afternoon's arraignment, a shaky Mongiello told Honorable Judge, Jonathan Wehrmeister, he accepted the charge and would need a county appointed attorney.He has been charged with murder. If convicted, he can face 5 to life in prison and a $10,000 fine

Mongiello was charged with a DWI last August which is still pending. He was with U.S. Customs for nearly 26 years and had recently changed positions.

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