Sherra Wright entered a guilty plea Thursday for facilitating the murder of her ex-husband, former NBA player Lorenzen Wright.
According to the Associated Press, Sherra Wright pleaded guilty to facilitation of first-degree murder nearly nine years after Lorenzen Wright was found shot to death in a wooded area outside Memphis. Sherra Wright received a 30-year sentence, but will be eligible for parole once she serves 30 percent of her sentence, per the AP.
With the guilty plea, Sherra Wright, who was arrested in December 2017, waived her right to a trial, which was scheduled for Sept. 16. Had she been found guilty in a trial, she could have faced life in prison, per the Memphis Commercial Appeal.
Lorenzen Wright traveled to Memphis on July 18, 2010 to visit the seven children he had with Sherra Wright. A police investigation concluded that Lorenzen Wright was shot in the early morning hours of July 19. His mother reported him missing on July 22. His body, riddled with gunshot wounds, was located on July 28.
The case went unsolved for years until the weapon believed to have been used in the murder was found in a lake in November 2017. That discovery led to the arrest of Billy Turner, who is charged as a co-defendant with Sherra Wright in the case.
At a bond hearing on May 5, 2018, prosecutors laid out the case against Turner and Sherra Wright using information from a third unindicted suspect, Lorenzen Wright’s cousin Jimmie Martin, who had been convicted of murder in a separate case and was in prison. Prosecutors said Martin detailed a failed plot to kill Lorenzen Wright in Atlanta, told investigators where to find the firearm used in the shooting and detailed how he helped Sherra Wright and Turner clean up the crime scene.
Lorenzen Wright’s mother addresses Sherra Wright, asks to see grandkids
Deborah Marion, mother of Lorenzen Wright, was in court and spoke directly to Sherra Wright after she entered her plea. Marion urged Sherra Wright to let her see her 7 grandchildren.
“Sherra Wright I want to thank you for giving me my grandchildren, that’s what I want to thank you for. But I want you to unlock them ... so they can see their grandma,” Marion said, per WMC Action News 5. “... We love them, we want to see them.”
Also from WMC Action News 5:
Marion said she was able to keep calm in the courtroom after thinking about her grandchildren. Marion said she is satisfied with the sentence because Lorenzen’s family can attend parole hearings, but she will push for Wright to serve the full 30 years.
“My son is serving life,” she said.
Lorenzen Wright’s basketball career
After starring at the University of Memphis. Lorenzen Wright was selected No. 7 overall in the 1996 NBA draft by the Los Angeles Clippers, ahead of stars like Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Jermaine O’Neal. The 6-foot-11 center spent the first three seasons of his career with the Clippers and two more with the Atlanta Hawks before returning to Memphis to play for the Grizzlies. He spent five years with the Grizzlies before another stint with the Hawks and two brief appearances with the Sacramento Kings and Cleveland Cavaliers.
In 778 career NBA games, Wright averaged 8.0 points and 6.4 rebounds per game. His best year statistically came in Memphis in the 2001-02 season when he averaged 12.0 points and 9.4 rebounds per contest.
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