Husband charged in stabbing of Arma woman, her grandmother

Jeremy Delmarco

ARMA, Kan. — A 32-year-old Kansas man was charged Tuesday with murder and attempted murder in the fatal stabbing of his wife and severe injuring of her grandmother at a residence north of Arma.

Dorma Lemaster, 84, called 911 at 12:01 p.m. Monday to report that Jeremy Delmarco, 32, had cut his arms and was assaulting her granddaughter, Brandy Delmarco, 37, at 423 N. Highway 69.

The nearest Crawford County sheriff's deputy arrived three minutes later to find Lemaster, her granddaughter and the granddaughter's husband all in the backyard of the home. Both Brandy Delmarco and Lemaster had been stabbed and were seriously injured. The younger woman was down on the ground and bleeding, according to Capt. Danny Smith of the Crawford County Sheriff's Department.

"She was pretty much incapacitated," Smith said. "The grandmother, Dorma, was up and still walking around."

Smith said Jeremy Delmarco was no longer wielding any weapon but resisted the deputy's efforts to secure the scene and arrest him.

"He was acting bizarre," Smith said. "I couldn't tell you what he may have been under the influence of, but he was acting bizarre."

The husband's refusal to obey the deputy's commands led to the deputy's repeated use of a stun gun on him, Smith said. The suspect kept recovering from the jolts delivered by the gun and struggling with the deputy. Smith said matters worsened when Delmarco's dog began attacking the deputy and bit him.

Smith estimated that the first deputy dealt with the situation on his own for about five minutes before a second deputy arrived to assist in taking Delmarco into custody. Because the dog continued to be aggressive, one of the deputies shot and killed him, according to a news release put out by the sheriff's office.

Both women were taken to local hospitals by ambulance once the deputies got the husband under control. Brandy Delmarco later died of her injuries. Her grandmother underwent surgery and is expected to survive, the sheriff's office said. The first deputy on the scene also was taken to a hospital to be checked out for minor injuries.

Jeremy Delmarco was released back into the custody of the sheriff's office after treatment at a hospital for cuts to his arm. He was being held Tuesday at the Crawford County Jail on a $100,000 bond, charged with second-degree murder, attempted murder in the second degree and interference with law enforcement.

Smith said it remained unknown on Tuesday exactly what caused the husband's alleged violence. He said that he is not aware of any prior domestic disturbances involving the Delmarcos.

Jeff Lehr is a reporter for The Joplin Globe.