Billy Turner Sentenced On Lesser Charges In Slaying Of Former NBA Star Lorenzen Wright

Photo Credit: David Sherman/NBAE/Getty Images

Billy Turner Sentenced On Lesser Charges In Slaying Of Former NBA Star Lorenzen Wright


A 911 call in Germantown, a suburb of Memphis, Tennessee, in July 2010:


“Hey, Goddamn!” “Germantown 911, what’s the emergency? Hello? Hello? Hello? I don’t have nothing but gunshots,“


These were the final moments in the life of former NBA star, Lorenzen Wright. 10 days later, Wright had been reported missing by his mother.

K9s were able to find the weather-worn corpse of Wright, that had already been decomposed by animals to a such extent that the body of the 230 pound big man had dwindled to just 57 pounds. 

At least nine shots were fired at the 13-year NBA veteran. Shots pierced Wright’s head and chest—and the autopsy report stated that ‘additional gunshot wounds could not be excluded’.

It took nine long years to get justice for the gruesome murder. In 2019, the ex-wife of former NBA player Lorenzen Wright, Sherra Wright, pleaded guilty to facilitation of first-degree murder, and to facilitation of a criminal attempt to commit first degree murder and was sentenced to 30 years in prison. 

Per The Guardian:


Sherra Wright and co-defendant Billy Turner were charged in December 2017 with first-degree murder. Turner’s trial remains scheduled for September. He has already pleaded guilty to a gun charge related to Lorenzen Wright’s shooting. Hagerman would not say whether Sherra Wright would testify during Turner’s trial.

Turner, a landscaper in the Memphis suburb of Collierville, and Sherra Wright attended the same church. Witnesses said Sherra Wright masterminded a plan to have two men kill Lorenzen Wright at his home in Atlanta, but that attempt failed, according to an affidavit. She and Turner then conspired to kill him in Memphis, and they dumped one of the guns used in the shooting in a Mississippi lake, authorities have said. A gun that was allegedly used in the killing was found in the lake weeks before charges were filed in the case.


Last week however, Billy Turner, who was serving life in prison after his first-degree murder conviction in the slaying of Wright, was sentenced Friday on lesser charges of conspiracy and attempted murder in the 12-year-old case.



Shelby County Judge Lee Coffee sentenced Billy Ray Turner to 25 years in prison for both the conspiracy and the attempted murder charges. Turner was convicted March 21 in the fatal shooting of Wright, a center who played 13 seasons in the NBA before he retired after 2008-09.

Coffee sentenced Turner, 51, to life in prison on the day of his conviction. Turner already was serving a 16-year sentence for possessing a weapon as a convicted felon. Turner was found with two guns when he was arrested in 2017 in Wright’s killing and he pleaded guilty in 2019.

The judge decided that the 25-year-sentences will run concurrently. When added to the 16-year sentence for the gun charge, Turner essentially has been sentenced to life plus 41 years in prison, with the possibility of parole, Coffee said.


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