Self-defense, adultery discussed at Va. Beach murder suspect’s hearing

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — It’s unclear what unfolded in the five seconds between a Virginia Beach math tutor turning on the light to his bedroom and allegedly shooting a man dead, but his defense attorney says the killing was self-defense.

Dusan M. Naumovic is charged with second-degree murder and the use of a firearm in the commission of a felony in connection to the March 2 shooting death of 37-year-old Vinicius Freire Carneiro.

Naumovic is a 53-year-old math and physics tutor and a former Cape Henry Collegiate teacher. About a dozen people who’d had their children be tutored by Dusan Naumovic appeared in Virginia Beach General District Court on Thursday for a bond hearing in his case.

That hearing did not go as planned, after Virginia Beach prosecutor Scott Lang asked Dusan Naumovic’s wife, Sheri, to testify about the five seconds between her husband entering their bedroom and allegedly killing Carneiro.

Dusan Naumovic’s defense attorney, Mike Joynes, argued the 49-year-old woman does not have a lawyer and might not be aware that she doesn’t have to testify against her husband because of spousal privilege. Joynes said her testimony could implicate her in another crime – adultery.

Adultery is a class four misdemeanor in Virginia, meaning it’s punishable with up to a $250 fine.

Lang said the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office has no intentions of attempting to charge Sheri Naumovic with adultery, and promised the Virginia Beach judge presiding over the hearing that he would extend full immunity to her of the misdemeanor if she decided to testify.

Sheri Naumovic told the judge that she wasn’t ready to testify in her husband’s case on Thursday. The judge continued the bond hearing until Friday to give her 24 hours to consider her testimony.

Although the hearing was short, Joynes did offer some details about what his client says happened in the moments leading up to the shooting. 

Dusan and Sheri Naumovic have a 16-year-old son who has autism. Their son is nonverbal and has a tendency to wander around, Joynes said.

For most of his life, the Naumovics had their son sleep with them in their bed to prevent him from getting hurt. Recently, the couple taught their son to sleep in his own bed, but only with parental supervision, Joynes said.

The couple took turns sleeping in their son’s room to ensure his safety. It was Dusan Naumovic’s turn to sleep with their son on the night before the shooting.

Naumovic was asleep in their son’s room when he woke up around 3 a.m. and heard noises coming from he and his wife’s bedroom. Thinking there was a prowler in the house, he got up to investigate, Joynes said.

Naumovic opened the door to he and his wife’s bedroom and turned on the light. The shooting happened five seconds later.

Joynes added that Naumovic didn’t know Carneiro at the time of the shooting, and that he thought he was defending his home from a break-in. Joynes said before the bond hearing, Sheri Naumovic gave the defense attorney a letter stating that she’s not afraid of her husband and that she wants him to come home. 

10 On Your Side combed through court records, which showed that about seven months before Dusan Naumovic was charged with murder, his wife was charged with allegedly assaulting him and her cousin after she was accused of having an affair.

The alleged assault happened on July 20, 2018.

Dusan Naumovic was asleep when his wife’s cousin woke him up around 2:30 a.m. and said that Sheri Naumovic was having an affair with an “unknown man,” according to court documents.

Dusan Naumovic confronted his wife about the alleged affair, sending her into a “fit of rage.” She allegedly hit her husband about a dozen times and threatened to cut him. When police arrived to the Hunting Horn Way home, Sheri Naumovic also allegedly charged at her cousin, hit him in the face, and kicked him in the groin, court documents state.

Other details about the Naumovic’s relationship were detailed in the court records as well, including that Sheri Naumovic suffers from mental illness and has “in the past” threatened her husband with murder-suicide.

911 records show that police were called to the Naumovics’ home for a domestic situation four times on July 20, 2018 between 2:31 a.m. and 6:47 a.m.

Someone in the home called 911 again at 8:14 a.m. on Jan. 22, 2019 in response to a “suicide threat or attempt,” records show.

10 On Your Side requested copies of the 911 calls made to the Naumovics’ home; however, ECCS Custodian of Records Amanda Bitner Tanner said that the audio files for the July incidences are no longer available, and that there’s no audio connected to the January incident.

“The incident was created for a police report number to be generated,” Tanner said of the January 911 incident.

The assault and battery charge against Sheri Naumovic involving her cousin was nolle prossed – or withdrawn – in Virginia Beach General District Court. In the case involving the alleged assault of her husband, court officials found there to be “sufficient evidence” to find Sheri Naumovic guilty, but ordered her to anger management and deferred a judgement against her until December 2020 as part of a plea agreement.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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