Jessica Fix said she awoke to loud ringing in her ears. She sat up and noticed blood dripping from her head.
Seated on an L-shaped couch opposite her was her boyfriend. He was holding a revolver.
“He said he was trying to shoot himself, but accidentally shot me,” Fix recounted to jurors Monday.
The evidence gathered by investigators following the Nov. 14, 2011, incident, prosecutors said, showed otherwise: Michael T. Boswell, upset because his girlfriend wanted to break up, first tried to poison Fix and then kill her.
The Yacolt woman, then 25, spent three weeks in the hospital after suffering a skull fracture and failing liver. She showed no visible signs of injury when she took the stand Monday as the prosecution’s first witness in the first-degree attempted murder trial of the 30-year-old Yacolt man. It is expected to wrap up Thursday.
The trial in Clark County Superior Court Judge Dan Stahnke’s courtroom began with opening statements in the afternoon; Fix’s testimony took up much of the rest of the day.
Defense attorney David Kurtz on Monday reserved the right to make an opening statement at a later time.
Fix began her testimony by telling jurors that Boswell moved in with her and her parents in 2008. While her relationship with Boswell started out pleasant, she said he was unemployed most of the time.
Things turned rocky in April 2011, when they began incessantly arguing about finances, among other things, she said. That fall, Boswell was upset after looking through her phone and finding text messages that indicated she was romantically involved with a man at work.
Fix said she tried to break up with Boswell twice, but he talked her into staying together. Then, days before the shooting, she said she broke up with him for good.
“He was very upset and distraught over it,'” she said.
In the early morning of Nov. 14, she came home from work. Boswell had prepared some peppermint tea for her, she said.
Things went awry from there.
Several hours later, she said she was nauseous and began vomiting. The shooting occurred after she had fallen asleep on the couch. She said she awoke to Bos-well holding the .22-caliber revolver. He claimed the shooting was an accident, she said.
After taking a shower and cleaning the blood from her head wound, she drove to the Battle Ground Fred Meyer store, where her friends drove her to the hospital.
Fix said she told Boswell she was leaving to pay her credit cards. Deputy Prosecutor Jeannie Bryant asked Fix why she told Boswell a lie.
“I was scared,” Fix said. “I didn’t want to be around him. He had just shot me.”
After she was admitted to the hospital, Fix was found to have a failing liver due to toxic levels of acetaminophen, a common ingredient of Tylenol. Bryant said investigators found evidence of acetaminophen in the cup of peppermint tea.
During cross-examination, Boswell’s defense attorney, Kurtz, pointed out the ex-couple’s relationship had never before been abusive. Kurtz tried to show Boswell was clingy and cried a lot.
“Were you growing tired of Michael?” Kurtz asked.
“Was I growing tired of Michael?” Fix responded. “I was growing tired of our arguments.”