Just before 7 a.m. on April 25, Jason Wilson shot and wounded his wife, Deana Broughton, before fatally shooting himself at a mobile home in the 15400 block of Cobalt Street in Sylmar.
Jason shot Deana in the head seconds before turning the gun on himself.
When police arrived, Wilson was pronounced dead at the scene. Broughton was transported to the hospital in critical condition. The couple’s two young daughters were at the home during the shooting but were unharmed.
It was a tragic end to a “tumultuous relationship” between the couple, one fueled by drugs and abuse, according to Amber Schwartz, Broughton’s cousin.
“They were back and forth a lot. In November 2014 my cousin married him thinking it was going to be better. But she realized she had made a mistake, and they went on and off. She was trying to file for a divorce,” Schwartz said.
“She did ask him to leave back in December, and a couple of weeks before this happened he moved back in. I guess he was suicidal or probably depressed. She basically told him he had to leave, but he wasn’t ready to leave his family.”
Broughton, a mother who cared for her three kids — 6-year-old Kortnie, 3-year-old Ashley, and teenage son Lance (from a previous relationship) — continues to fight for her life.
Surgeons performed a tracheotomy on her at the hospital. Schwartz says Broughton slipped into cardiac arrest and flat-lined for 45 minutes. Since then, the 40-year-old has been comatose, lying in a hospital bed at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Mission Hills.
The daughters are in foster homes. The son is living with his father.
Broughton’s family is struggling to pay her bills and keep up with other expenses.
Schwartz created a GoFundMe page seeking donations to raise $5,000. (At press time, 51 people had donated $2,375). The money would help pay for her home and fix several things in the house.
“Our family and friends have graciously been stepping forward to contribute to the best of their abilities, but we are exhausting our own resources and now need to reach out for the public’s help,” Schwartz said.
“The medical bills, we don’t know what those are going to be. If we can get more money, that would be great.”
Broughton, a Sylmar High School graduate who Schwartz describes as “funny, loving, caring to everybody,” will soon be moved to a facility in Studio City. When she will wake up is still unknown. Broughton is on life support in the intensive care unit, and has undergone several operations.
“Right now it’s a waiting game,” Schwartz said. “We’re just putting positive vibes out there that she will be waking up.”
She adds that Broughton is “making movements” that doctors say are typical of those in a coma.
“The doctor says it’s muscle spasms. They open their eyes, blink, and move around, she squeezes hands. We keep saying that she’s there, she’s just not woken up yet. She’s playing on the other side and we need her to come back.”
But waking up is half the battle.
“Doctors say she’s lost a lot of her brain mass, so [her recovery is] going to be a long haul,” admits Schwartz who visits Broughton often in the hospital.
“She will need intensive physical rehabilitation as well as the emotional therapy. She and her children will most certainly require support as part of their healing process.”
Schwartz is also trying to get the two daughters back as their temporary legal guardian.
“Right now we’re going to be having visitations to get them to know us better,” she said. “It’s hard. I never would have thought I would see or go through any of this in my life.”
If you would like to help Deana Broughton, visit https://www.gofundme.com/2b5zepk4.