Billy Ray Turner, 48, is set to appear in court Wednesday in Shelby County, Tennessee in the death of NBA player Lorenzen Wright, 34. The hearing is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. ET. You can watch in the player above.
The accused killer faces charges including first-degree murder, and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder. Prosecutors say the defendant worked together with the victim’s ex-wife Sherra Wright, 48, to commit the deed.
Lorenzen Wright–who played as a center in his 13-season career–was last seen alive July 18, 2010 leaving his ex’s home, authorities say. Cops in Germantown, Tennessee got a 911 call from his cell phone, but that was interrupted by gunfire, they said. He ended up being found dead in a field on July 28, 2010, having been shot multiple times, according to authorities. Investigators determined he was killed at some point between July 17 and July 24 of that year. The murder weapon was discovered years later in a lake near Walnut, Mississippi on November 9, 2017, prosecutors said.
Sherra Wright was charged with first-degree murder along with Turner, but she pleaded guilty to lesser charges of facilitation to commit first-degree murder, and facilitation to commit attempted first-degree murder. She was sentenced to 30 years for the first charge, and 8 years in the second. These are being served concurrently. According to investigators, the co-defendants got the guns, and recruited an unindicted co-conspirator. Turner went to Lorenzen Wright’s home to commit the crime, authorities said.
@lawandcrime will be covering the hearing of #BillyRayTurner accused co-defendant in the murder of ex-NBA player #LorezenWright #Lorenzen ex-wife #SherraWright already took a plea to two charges, avoiding a potential first-degree murder conviction. pic.twitter.com/xeiCK2yuAY
— Brian G. Buckmire (@BuckEsq) January 15, 2020
The defendant pleaded guilty and was sentenced last year in an unrelated gun case for being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm, on account of a previous 1992 felony conviction of reckless endangerment with a deadly weapon.
[Mugshot via Shelby County Jail]