In 2016, something terrible happened to Jessica Boynton, a 19-year-old mother of two. Her husband, Matthew Boynton, was at a nearby restaurant when he got a text from Jessica that read like a suicide note. Matthew, a police officer in a small town called Griffin, in Georgia, rushed home. There, he called for backup when he heard gunshots from within his apartment.
The investigators cleared the apartment, finding the two children crying and Jessica in a locked closet. There, she had what looked like a gunshot wound to the head, and Matthew’s service weapon was lying nearby.
Amazingly, she had survived the injury and was rushed to the hospital. She would go on to make a full recovery, though she has no memory of what happened the night of the shooting.
So, what happened? Did Jessica try to take her own life, or did someone try to hurt her? Family noted that the wording of the suicide text sent to Matt’s phone didn’t sound like Jessica.
Neighbors reported hearing two gunshots, not the one reported by Matt. Investigators have since pointed out that Matt and Jessica were talking about divorce, and Matt had a girlfriend behind Jessica’s back.
What’s more: Matthew’s grandfather was the sheriff in Griffin. Matt’s phone was inside the apartment when officers appeared, a fact noted by private investigators: it can be seen in evidence photos and bodycam footage from that night. However, Griffin’s police department alleges that it was put there after backup arrived.
Let’s address the elephant in the room: by many counts, it looks like Matthew tried to kill his wife.
The theory that the young police officer engineered this scenario isn’t terribly complicated. Investigators have alleged that Matt could have gotten into an argument with his wife in their apartment and shot her, thinking he killed her instantly. He would have then taken her phone, which he insisted have no lock on it, and composed the “suicide note.”
From there, he contacted a partner and met him at a nearby Waffle House for dinner. Then, he feigned receiving a text by sending it from Jessica’s phone right then. Phone records show Matthew sent his girlfriend an upbeat message shortly before contacting the police over the suicide note.
From there, investigators have alleged, Matthew may have placed Jessica’s phone back in their bedroom, and, in his haste, accidentally left his own phone on the counter, before exiting the apartment and “waiting for backup”.
Jessica Boynton has made a full recovery. Psychologists who have talked to her say that she is not suicidal, and seems to be handling the bizarre situation well. Jessica herself has no idea what happened that night, the injury to her head clearly claiming her long-term memory of the event.
Matthew was eventually relieved of his duties in Griffin, though he has since found employment somewhere else. Did he try to kill his wife, or was she the lucky survivor of a freak suicide attempt? The truth may never come out.