At an order of protection hearing just three days before her estranged husband opened fire inside her workplace, Zina Haughton told a Wisconsin court commissioner about years of abuse.
"I don't want to die. I just don't want to die," she is heard saying on audio recordings released Tuesday.
The hearing was in response to a written request for a restraining order filed Oct. 8. Zina Haughton said her husband, Radcliffe Haughton, was convinced she was cheating on him and threatened to throw acid in her face and burn her and her family with gas.
The couple were face to face in court last Thursday as Zina Haughton described how she feared for her safety.
"Things have gotten too bad, Rad. I just — we need to separate. We need a divorce," she said.
He, in a bizarre twist, asked questions of her as his own attorney.
"Has your husband ever harmed you?" he asked.
"My husband has harmed me for the past 20 years on and off," she replied.
Radcliffe Haughton, who has roots in the Chicago area, told the judge he promised to "make things alright," but after so many years, Zina Haughton had made up her mind.
"I just want peace of mind and to end this marriage before something bad happens to me," she said.
A four-year restraining order was ultimately granted, but it did little good. Radcliffe Haughton entered the Azana Salon and Spa in Brookfield, Wis., around 11 a.m. Sunday and opened fire. Three women were killed, including Zina Haughton. Four others were injured.
Police say Radcliffe Haughton then shot and killed himself, leaving his 13-year-old daughter without either parent.