Kerrigan Family Doesn't Blame Mark Kerrigan for Father's Death, But Ex-Wife Feared for Her Life

BOSTON (CBS/AP) The Kerrigan family isn't blaming Mark Kerrigan who is facing charges for the death of his father, but his ex-wife Janet Kerrigan told NBC's "Today" Show Wednesday, that he is a "very angry man" with a drinking problem.

Photo: Left, Mark Kerrigan; right, Daniel and Brenda Kerrigan.

PICTURES: Nancy Kerrigan Family Tragedy

Daniel Kerrigan, the father of ex-Olympic skater Nancy Kerigan, died last month of a heart rhythm problem after a fight with his son. Mark Kerrigan has pleaded not guilty to assault but could face more serious charges since the medical examiner has ruled the death a homicide.

Photo: Nancy Kerrigan and her mother at her father's Stoneham, Mass., funeral Jan. 28, 2010.

PICTURES: Nancy Kerrigan Family Tragedy

An autopsy showed the cause of death was "cardiac dysrhythmia" resulting from neck compression that damaged his windpipe. Mark Kerrigan told police he put his hands around his father's neck and his father eventually died.

The Kerrigan family criticized the autopsy results and issued a statement that they do "not blame anyone" for the father's death and that the report was premature without having "all the relevant facts" including Daniel's pre-existing heart condition.

But Mark Kerrigan's ex-wife Janet Kerrigan has been less kind. Last month she told New England Cable News that Mark Kerrigan was capable of murder.

"Did I think that Mark could ever kill me? That thought went through my head quite often…But I tell you, I never thought he would kill his father," she said.

After her ex-husband once assaulted her, she said she went to Daniel Kerrigan to discuss Mark's violent streak. The father just replied, "It's the booze" and walked away. She claims although she witnessed family arguments, she never saw any violence within the family.

Mark Kerrigan is charged with assault and battery but could face other charges. He is in prison in Massachusetts undergoing psychiatric evalutation.

PICTURES: Nancy Kerrigan Family Tragedy

February 9, 2010 - Nancy Kerrigan's Father Daniel Kerrigan Was Murdered, Say Prosecutors After Autopsy Results
January 26, 2010 - Tonya Harding to Nancy Kerrigan: You Have My "Deepest Sympathy"
January 25, 2010 - Nancy Kerrigan's Family Defends Mark Kerrigan in Father's Death
January 25, 2010 - Mark Kerrigan: I Didn't Attack My Dad Daniel Kerrigan
January 25, 2010 - Nancy Kerrigan Family Tragedy: Daniel Kerrigan Sued Son Mark Kerrigan for $100K
January 25, 2010 - Nancy Kerrigan's Brother Mark Kerrigan Charged in Connection with Father's Death