Lorenzen Wright’s ex-wife will not enjoy early release from a 30-year prison sentence she received after pleading guilty to conspiring to murder the retired NBA player in 2010 , the Tennessee parole board announced Monday.
The board voted to deny parole to Sherra Wright, who pleaded guilty in July 2019 to facilitating first-degree murder in the murder of her ex-husband. The decision was made after three of the seven board members agreed to deny his release due to the seriousness of his offense, board spokesman Dustin Krugel said in an email to The Associated. Press.
Sherra Wright appeared for a May 11 parole hearing at the Nashville jail where she is being held. Wright said she did well in the classes she has been taking since prison and has a support system to help her when she is released. Two of his children have made statements on his behalf.
Among those who spoke out against his early release was Lorenzen Wright’s mother, Deborah Marion. She said Sherra Wright should serve 30 years of her sentence.
Sherra Wright received the hearing based on her so-called “safety valve” date, which is the earliest possible release date for some inmates under an executive order regarding prison overcrowding. The Tennessee Department of Correction said she received more than three years of credit related to her time in service.
Board member Barrett Rich presided over the hearing and recommended that the board deny parole. His next parole hearing is scheduled for May 2027.
Lorenzen Wright’s murder was one of the highest profile murder cases in Memphis history. His decomposing body was found riddled with gunshot wounds in a marshy field east of Memphis on July 28, 2010. The 34-year-old father of six had been missing for days before his body was discovered .
A native of Memphis, Wright was a 6-foot-11 center who played 13 seasons in the NBA before retiring after the 2008-09 season.
Billy Ray Turner and Sherra Wright were charged with first degree murder in December 2017, more than seven years after the killings. She entered a surprise guilty plea on the lesser charge of facilitating murder, but Turner claimed he was innocent and stood trial. He was convicted in March of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison.
The motive for the murder was not specified during the trial, although prosecutors said the killers were motivated by jealousy and greed. Sherra Wright received $1million from her ex-husband’s life insurance policy and settled a legal dispute in 2014 over how she spent the insurance money meant for their six children.