Chief Investigative Reporter

Jeremy Finley is the chief investigator for News4 Investigates. His reporting has resulted in criminal convictions, legislative hearings before the U.S. Congress, and the payout of more than a million dollars to scam victims.

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Despite being unable to speak, Leigh Ann Zirkle would not be silenced.

How the Cherokee Park woman was able to communicate with Metro Police, despite having her throat slit, showed that she was instrumental in identifying the person who murdered her husband and brutally attacked her.

News4 Investigates obtained the entire investigative case file into the horrific crime on Cherokee Road on June 21.

The investigative file shows that after the murder of her husband and being stabbed herself, Leigh Ann made it out into the street where neighbors found her.

Before she went into surgery, a detective wrote that Leigh Ann could not speak because of the wound to her throat.

But, she was conscious and making eye contact, and indicated that she could communicate with nodding.

The report showed that Leigh Ann was able to give a basic description of the man who attacked them by answering detective's question.

But the file shows Leigh Ann wanted to tell more.

Despite her injuries, she indicated that she could write more information down.

According to the file, Leigh Ann wrote that the suspect said he was lost and was asking for directions and described him down to details of the color of shirt.

The file showed that Leigh Ann's answers and narrative helped identify that the car parked in front of her home belonged to the man who attacked them and he also stole the Zirkle's car.

Police said 34-year-old Peter Bohning of Kent, CT, was responsible for the crimes.

He was shot and killed three days later in Texas when he attacked a deputy.

While there is no conclusion in the file why Bohning chose the Zirkle's house or committed the murder and attack, Bohning's family told reporters at the time that he suffered from mental illness.

Interior photographs of Bohning's car that he parked in front of the Zirkle's show a bizarre collection of items inside, including a shovel, duct tape, cable ties, a mask of celebrity chef Guy Fieri, and several snacks and water.

Elaine Flick, Leigh Ann's sister, told News4 Investigates that she is out of the hospital and had a long rehabilitation ahead of her.

Flick said her family great appreciates the outpouring of prayers and generosity from the community. is now with you on the go! Get the latest news updates and video, 4WARN weather forecast, weather radar, special investigative reports, sports headlines and much more from News4 Nashville.

>> Click/tap here to download our free mobile app. <<

Copyright 2019 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.