Documents unveil details in Hillsboro attempted murder plot
A woman who allegedly planned to kill her ex-husband had tried to kill him at least once before, according to court documents.
Tanya Schmalz, 36, of Battle Ground, Wash., was arrested Nov. 12 and faces two counts of attempted murder. Authorities say she was planning to drug then kill her former husband, Jonathan Schmalz, who lives in Hillsboro.
In a search warrant affidavit submitted Nov. 14, Hillsboro police officers detailed what they know about the alleged plot, which reportedly involved getting the man drunk and high and injecting him with a lethal amount of insulin.
On Nov. 10, two friends of Tanya Schmalz went to Hillsboro Police, saying the woman was planning to kill her ex-husband. One of the friends had known Schmalz for years, she said. Friends told police Schmalz often joked about murdering her ex-husband, which they didn't take seriously.
But the affidavit claims that those conversations intensified after Schmalz lost her job, and was in the process of being evicted from her home.
"Tanya blames John because he does not pay child support to Tanya for their two sons," the friend told police, according to the affidavit. Court documents claim Schmalz planned to kill her ex-husband in order to collect his Social Security money.
Authorities believe this isn't the first time Schmalz has tried to kill her ex-husband.
According to court documents, in September 2016, Schmalz poured crushed Benadryl into a bottle of vodka, which she gave to her ex-husband . She then reportedly drove him to a local convenience store on Tualatin Valley Highway and left him there. According to the affidavit, police found the man and believed he was overdosing on drugs. He survived that attempt and later accused her of trying to poison him, the affidavit claimed. No charges were filed in that case until now.
Schmalz reportedly told one the friends about the attempt, adding that she had not intended to kill the man, but had hoped in his altered state he would "do something stupid to get arrested."
The new plan, according to prosecutors, involved Schmalz getting her ex-husband drunk at his home on Brookwood Avenue, then have him inhale "Rush," a tape cleaner that causes a brief, but powerful high. Schmalz would then inject a lethal dose of insulin into the man's stomach then cover his nose and mouth with a Rush-soaked rag until he stopped breathing. She would then wipe down the home, removing any fingerprints, according to the affidavit.
Schmalz allegedly asked the two friends to help her in the murder. One friend would need to purchase Rush for her, so Schmalz wouldn't be caught on video surveillance purchasing the item, which could be incriminating, one of the friends told police. The other friend would keep Schmalz's cellphone at her home, and would use it to text Schmalz's daughter and make it appear that Schmalz was with her in Washington, giving her an alibi for the murder.
Schmalz wouldn't discuss the plot over the phone or through text messaging with the friends, the affidavit said, so police had one of the two friends wear a body wire and asked her to record Schmalz discussing the plot, which she reportedly did, according to the affidavit.
Schmalz was arrested later that day. According to authorities they found a bottle of Rush in her pocket and a syringe so full of insulin that the plunger was hanging at an angle, nearly spilling the contents of the syringe out.
During her interrogation, Schmalz said she "would love for (her ex-husband) to be dead," but said that talking about killing him was a form of therapy she used.
Schmalz's next day in court is set for Dec. 10.
By Geoff Pursinger
Editor, Hillsboro Tribune
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