Over a decade after the murder of former NBA player Lorenzen Wright, the final killer has been brought to justice.
On Monday, twelve years after his untimely death, a Tennessee jury convicted Billy Ray Turner of killing former NBA player Lorenzen Wright. A jury reportedly deliberated only two hours before finding Billy Ray Turner guilty of first-degree murder, attempted murder, and conspiracy.
According to reports, Wright’s body was riddled with bullets and found in a field in Memphis, his hometown. According to reports, Wright was seen July 18, 2010, during a visit with his children at his ex-wife’s home.
Authorities think Wright’s death occurred the next day (July 19); gunshots were heard during a fateful 911 call Wright made.
It is a final part of a saga that included former NBA player’s ex-wife, Sherra Wright.
According to reports, in 2019, Sherra pleaded guilty to facilitation to commit first-degree murder and facilitation to commit attempted first-degree murder.
She received a 30-year sentence in exchange for her plea.
A Family Mourns
Although the conviction provides an ending to the court procedural process sparked by Wright’s death, it has done little to soothe the minds and hearts of some of his closest family members.
“It’ll never be closure because I’ll never see my son again,” said Deborah Marion, mother of Lorenzen Wright, to The Associated Press. “This is just some satisfaction for me and my family.”
Lorenzen and Sherra Wright divorced in February 2010.
According to reports, law enforcement claims that Sherra Wright devised the plan to kill her ex-husband, recruiting her cousin, Jimmie Martin, and Turner, a landscaper with whom she had a romantic relationship.
The two reportedly met in church.
According to reports, Billy Ray Turner had two guns when arrested for Wright’s 2017 killing and is now serving a 16-year prison sentence on a separate gun charge.
However, Turner is facing more consequences.
He was also sentenced to life in prison by Shelby County Criminal Court Judge Lee Coffee for the murder conviction, and sentencing is upcoming for the additional charges.
Sherra Wrights’s cousin, Jimmie Martin faced charges of killing his girlfriend at the time of Wright’s murder. Sherra Wright reportedly helped pay a portion of his legal fees in the case, although he was eventually convicted and is in prison.
However, he received immunity from prosecution in the Wright case for testifying that Sherra Wright recruited him and Turner for the murder. The motive, according to Martin, was money.
According to reports, Sherra Wright received a $1 million payout from her ex-husband’s life insurance policy.
The Sad Reality
“The thing that I can’t get over with his loss is how we lost him, greed,” Lorenzen’s cousin Travino said to local Memphis News Channel 3 WREG.
“Simple greed to kill him for money. I want to leave people with the fact that we were dealing with a despicable human being that was so greedy that she decided to kill the father of her children. And she plotted to do it and wasn’t satisfied until she got it done.”
Drafted in the first round of the 1996 NBA Draft, Wright was selected by the Los Angeles Clippers. He played for the Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies, Sacramento Kings, and Cleveland Cavaliers in his 13 seasons in the NBA.