BY MATT GUTMAN and ENJOLI FRANCIS
Through tears today, Nichole Oulson broke her silence, describing the moment her husband, Chad Oulson, was fatally shot after texting in a Florida movie theater.
"And just to think that in the blink of an eye, my whole world just got shattered into a million pieces," she said during a news conference at her attorney's office. "And now I'm left trying to pick them all up and putting them back together."
The Oulsons were enjoying a rare night out together Jan. 13, after leaving their young daughter, Alexis, with a babysitter.
"Me and my husband didn't get a date night very often, much less a whole day to spend together, so I was just so excited and looking forward to spending the day with the love of my life," Oulson said today.
During previews before the movie "Lone Survivor" at a Wesley Chapel, Fla., theater, Chad Oulson sent one last text to the babysitter. That reportedly annoyed Curtis Reeves, a retired police captain, sitting with his wife behind the Oulsons.
According to authorities, an argument erupted between the two men. Reeves, 71, went to tell the movie theater managers and when he returned, the argument escalated, according to police.
Chad Oulson threw popcorn at Reeves and Reeves pulled out a .380 semi-automatic handgun and shot him. Nichole Oulson was wounded in the hand when she put it up to protect her husband, according to the sheriff's office. Chad Oulson, 43, died that night.
Reeves was arrested at the theater.
Reeves previously said he "was in fear of being attacked" by Chad Oulson so he pulled his gun from his pants pocket and shot the victim, police said.
The sheriff said Reeves' gun jammed after the first and only shot was fired.
Reeves was charged with second-degree murder. He is claiming self-defense.
"He was struck in the face with an unknown object," said Reeves' lawyer Richard Escobar. "At that point, he has every right to defend himself."
Reeves' lawyers say they plan to invoke Florida's controversial "Stand Your Ground" law, added to that, under Florida law there are harsher penalties for those who attack people older than 65.
That news was heartbreaking for Nichole Oulson.
"It's hard and it's so unbearable," she said. "But I want to thank you for all of your thoughts and prayers."
Reeves faces up to life in prison if convicted.