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Detectives stand Monday outside the scene of a homicide on Sunset Avenue in Cleveland.

A woman shot and killed her husband inside their home early Monday morning during a domestic dispute, Cleveland, Tenn., police said.

Police said Miranda Cheatham killed her husband, James Cheatham, 45, just after 6 a.m. inside their home at 805 Sunset Ave. Miranda Cheatham has not been arrested or charged.

Police still are determining what led to the shooting and whether criminal charges are appropriate, public information officer Evie West said. She declined to say what Miranda Cheatham told authorities happened or whether the woman was injured during the dispute.

The first officers to arrive at the home on Sunset Avenue found James Cheatham lying mortally wounded on the floor. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

The Cheathams' teenage son also was home during the shooting, but it's unclear if he witnessed the incident. Miranda Cheatham called 911, West said. Investigators have interviewed both her and the son.

"We only have one side of the story — hers," West said. "We can't get his side. So we have to listen to what she has to say and see if the evidence matches up."

West declined to say how many times James Cheatham was shot or where he was wounded. She said she does not believe police have responded to previous domestic disputes at the home.

The Cheathams have owned the house on Sunset Avenue since 2007, according to property records. The quiet neighborhood is full of mid-sized, single-family homes with sprawling lawns.

Neighbors said James Cheatham ran a roofing business and also did landscaping work.

"He was upbeat, funny, always the class clown," said Tammy Wright, a childhood friend of James Cheatham. "He was always smiling and happy-go-lucky."

He rode motorcycles, Wright said, and often went by the nickname "Tutor." Wright mostly lost touch with James Cheatham after they dated in middle school, but saw him now and then throughout the years, sometimes at motorcycle shows.

She was near the crime scene when she heard the news and impulsively stopped by to say goodbye.

"This just totally breaks my heart," she said, tears in her eyes. "I can't believe it."

James Cheatham's death is the third homicide in Cleveland so far in 2016. Earlier this year, two women were stabbed to death at an apartment complex in the city in April.

There have been 31 homicides in Chattanooga so far this year.

Contact staff writer Shelly Bradbury at 423-757-6525 or sbradbury@timesfreepress.com with tips or story ideas. Follow @ShellyBradbury.

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