The ex-wife of a former NBA star is in jail for her role in the gruesome murder of a basketball player in a case that has rocked the country.
The discovery of Lorenzen Wright’s body riddled with bullets in a field is just one of the chilling details of his death.
Sherra Wright pleaded guilty to her role in Lorenzen’s death in 2019 and was sentenced to 30 years in prison after his decomposed body was found in a field in 2010.
Lorenzen was a 34-year-old former NBA professional basketball player who played a total of 13 seasons after being selected seventh overall in 1996.
The father of six played for the Los Angeles Clippers, Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies, Sacramento Kings and Cleveland Cavaliers at various points in his career.
According to the Associated Press, his murder in 2010 is one of the most high-profile murders in Memphis history.
The former professional NBA player went missing on the night of July 18, 2010.
Police said he had just left his ex-wife Sherra Wright’s home in Tennessee and they had only been separated for five months at the time.
Both the Memphis Grizzlies and the City of Memphis offered a $5,000 reward for any information on Lorenzen’s whereabouts after his disappearance.
The State of Tennessee was willing to pay $10,000 and the Crime Stoppers put in $1,000.
The tragic discovery came 10 days after he was declared missing. His body was found decomposing in a desert field near a golf course.
According to law enforcement agencies, 11 shots were found in his head, torso and right forearm.
A seven-year investigation followed.
FAILED CALL 911
Lorenzen attempted to call 911 on the morning of July 19, just after his disappearance.
The dispatcher was reportedly unable to locate him or make out what he was saying.
Instead, they reported hearing gunshots in the background.
Later, the challenge would be played in court and the loud sound of gunshots would be presented to the jury.
Ultimately, three suspects were taken into custody in connection with what happened to Lorenzen, including Sherra Wright’s cousin.
Lorenzen Scherra’s ex-wife, her landscape designer Billy Ray Turner, and her cousin Jimmy Martin were detained by police for questioning.
Martin testified in court that Sherra Wright hired him and Turner to kill Lorenzen.
PREVIOUS “BUY MURDER”
Prosecutors said Martin and Turner previously came to Lorenzen’s Atlanta apartment with guns.
They reportedly broke in only to find someone sleeping on the couch and Lorenzen was out.
They left and Sherra Wright came up with a new plan.
ROMANCE WITH TURNER
According to prosecutors at Turner’s trial, Turner and Sherra Wright were romantically involved.
Turner worked as a landscape designer in Atlanta and met Sherra Wright at a church they both attended.
According to prosecutors, she could have easily manipulated Turner.
TIRED OF RUN
Sherra Wright allegedly told her cousin that she had devised a plan with Turner to have Lorenzen meet her on the field where he would be attacked.
Martin further explained in court testimony that Sherra told him that she and Turner ambushed Lorenzen after luring him there.
They pursued Lorenzen, who jumped over the fence and tried to escape before being shot.
Initially, Sherra Wright claimed that Lorenzen was killed in a botched drug deal.
In July 2019, she reversed her position and pleaded guilty to charges of aiding and abetting first-degree murder.
Since Martin had already been tried for the alleged murder of his girlfriend, he was granted immunity in the case.
During Martin’s trial testimony, he told jurors that Turner disposed of the gun in a northern Mississippi lake, and he told detectives where to find the gun in 2012.
The gun was later found by FBI divers just 50 miles from where Lorenzen’s body was found, and Turner was arrested in 2017, shortly after the murder weapon was found.
The 12-member jury deliberated for two hours before finding Turner guilty of first-degree murder, attempted murder, and conspiracy to kill Lorenzen on March 21, 2022.
Turner was sentenced to life in prison.
LIFE INSURANCE CLAIMS
Although the motive has not been clarified in court, Lorenzen’s mother Deborah Marion alleges that Sherra killed him in order to gain access to his million dollar life insurance policy.
Sherra reportedly spent $1 million quickly after his death.
The policy was to take care of the couple’s six living children if anything happened to him.
Their children include Lorenzen Wright Jr., Lauren Wright, twins Lamar and Shamar Wright, Sophia Wright and Lawson Wright.
Two of Wright’s children gave statements to the Tennessee Parole Board to support Sherra’s early release in May 2022, while Marion opposed her release.
Sherra claimed that she behaved well in prison and should be released early, but the request was denied.
She is serving a sentence in a rehabilitation center and must remain there 30 percent until negotiations for release begin.
This story originally appeared on Sun and reproduced here with permission.