The photo posted on Facebook that sent Stephen Thompson into a murderous rage was a closeup of Kristina Thompson and Carissa Gerard together, their heads touching.

In the picture, the newly formed couple are smiling, as friends would.

“That was all it was really meant to be,” Kristina Thompson testified Tuesday at her ex-husband’s trial on murder charges. “To show our friendship to the world.”

The photo was not intended to hurt him, she said. She was not sure he used Facebook much, if at all. By the time the photo was posted, she said, she knew he already was aware of the intimacy that she and Gerard had found. He had sent her threatening text messages letting her know he had been lurking about outside her house while Gerard was there, she testified.

That had scared them and caused Carissa and Kristina's 17-year-old son, Tyler, to insist that Kristina Thompson seek a court order of protection against him. She did that May 28, 2015, and once it was served, Gerard moved in with her.

Stephen Thompson had not been living at the house on West 26th Place in Joplin since March or April when she had asked him to leave. Married in October 2012 after what she acknowledged was a whirlwind courtship, the relationship first began to deteriorate about the time of the birth of their only child in November 2013.

Stephen Thompson suffered a disabling fall at work shortly before the boy was born, which affected his ability to provide for them. They were getting by on advances on an anticipated disability case settlement and money her mother gave them.

The couple developed issues with drugs that led to their son being removed and placed in foster care. They were undergoing drug and parent counseling in the midst of their third or fourth separation when, on June 10, 2015, Stephen Thompson allegedly shot and killed Gerard, 38, and severely wounded Kristina Thompson.

On Tuesday, she recounted for the jury that she had returned home the day of the shootings to find Tyler watching television in the living room and Gerard folding laundry in their bedroom. She went in and began talking to Gerard about some selfies she had taken of her new hairstyle.

“Just out of the blue, I hear: ‘Tyler, where’s your mom?’” she recalled.

A second later, the door to the bedroom flew open, and Gerard jumped up and started to speak: “What the —?” and she heard a shot fired, she said.

Realizing they were cornered, the women instinctively made for the bedroom window, with Gerard exclaiming that she had been shot.

In a walk-through of the crime scene several hours later after having been arrested in the shootings, Stephen Thompson would tell investigators that when he entered the house through the garage and was surprised to find Tyler there, he asked where Kristina Thompson was and ordered the teen to get out of the house.

In a video of that walk-through played for the jury by prosecutors Tuesday, he described how he spotted Gerard on the bed as he opened the bedroom door.

“She was laying in the same spot that I used to lay in, and it p----d me off,” he told the detectives.

Stephen Thompson had explained to detectives he had trouble reloading the single-shot 12-gauge shotgun as the two women scrambled to get out the bedroom window.

In an effort to cut them off, he went out a back door and fired a second shot as they came out the window. He said he then went back through the house and garage to the east side of the residence and shot at them again as they were trying to scramble over the fence on that side of the property.

That sent the women running for the fence on the west side of the property, and he went back through the house into the backyard to take the shot that hit Gerard and knocked her on her back as she was crawling over the fence, and then turned the gun on Kristina Thompson as she was making her way over the fence.

Kristina Thompson recalled the pain of having been shot in the abdomen as “white hot.” Convinced the wound was “most likely fatal,” she dragged herself to the back door of her neighbors to the west “holding my guts in,” she said. The neighbor woman pulled her inside and she rolled on her back begging: “Please don’t let me die.”

She recalled the neighbor’s husband had gotten his gun out for protection should Stephen Thompson try to get to her again, and then a police officer arriving and asking her who shot her. She recounted her transport to the hospital as paramedics worked on her feverishly, marveling at how she was conscious and able to speak. She told them if she stopped talking, she was sure she would die.

In the emergency room, she recalled the surgeon who would save her life leaning in close to her at one point and telling her they were going to try to do just that. But was there anything she would like anyone to know? She said she told him to tell her mother she was sorry and her kids that she loved them very much.

Prosecutors finished presenting their case late Tuesday afternoon with the testimony of former Joplin police Detective Justin Barnett, who interviewed the 60-year-old defendant after his arrest and was the lead investigator on the walk-through of the crime scene.

A video of the interview was played for jurors prior to the video of the walk-through. In the interview, Stephen Thompson told Barnett: “I planned it. I planned this.”

The trial has focused on the issue of deliberation, which the state must prove for a first-degree murder conviction. Thompson faces charges of first-degree assault, and two counts of armed criminal action, in addition to the first-degree murder charge. Deliberation is described by law as “cool reflection for any length of time no matter how brief.”

The defense objected in advance to the playing of the interview and to the jury getting to hear the defendant’s response to a concluding question Barnett put to him as to whether he felt any remorse about what he had done. Judge David Mouton ruled that the state could present that portion of the interview to the jury.

Thompson responded to Barnett’s inquiry: “She got what she needed.”

And then added: “I can be your best friend, or I can be your worst enemy. It is what it is.”

Defense attorney Thomas Jacquinot elicited an acknowledgement from Barnett that despite how his client had answered the question about remorse, he also had displayed a significant change of demeanor during the interview when the topic turned to his son, whom he said he hoped would never be told what his father had done.

“I want him to be raised right because he’s a good boy,” Thompson told Barnett.

The trial continues Wednesday in Joplin.

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