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June 24, 2014

Elementary school teacher charged with killing boyfriend

CROSSVILLE, Tenn. — A special education teacher remained jailed in Tennessee on Monday, charged with the shooting death of her boyfriend of eight years, investigators said.

The shooting happened at a home belonging to Stephanie Cole, a teacher at Martin Elementary School in Crossville. According to an affidavit filed in the case, the body of Louis Tammaro, 31, a local businessman, was found in the back yard of Cole’s residence at 1033 Ackia Drive, in the Lake Tansi neighborhood of Crossville.

Cole, 36, was taken into custody after police responded to multiple 911 calls late Friday night.

The shooting has shaken the community, with friends and acquaintances describing Tammaro and Cole as friendly and personable.

According to investigators, a neighbor of Cole’s, Kim Smith — who also teaches at Martin Elementary — was awakened by a single gunshot at around 4 a.m. Friday morning. She went next door to Cole’s home to investigate and, according to Sheriff’s Investigator Jerry Jackson, discovered Tammaro’s body “in a tote in the back yard.” She also told a 911 dispatcher that she also found her friend, Cole, with “blood on her arms,” the report said. Smith quoted Cole as saying she had just killed her boyfriend.

The affidavit also noted the presence in the tote of “a pillow that appeared to have been placed over his face and shot through.”

Officials from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and detectives from the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Department spent most of the day Friday at the scene.

Cole was taken into custody and charged with first-degree murder. She is being held without bond.

Information for this story was reported by the Crossville (Tenn.) Chronicle.

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