No Bond Sought for Slain Pastor's Wife

A minister's wife charged with shooting her husband to death waived her right to a preliminary hearing Thursday.

The judge ordered Mary Winkler, who has been charged with first-degree murder, to be held in custody until her next court appearance after her lawyers told the court she was not seeking a bond.

Speaking to the press outside the courthouse, her lawyers said there were a number of reasons why bond was not sought.

"Her condition is pretty fragile," defense attorney Leslie Ballin said. "We think it is in her best interest not have bond at this time."

Another member of the defense team, Steve Farese, said that while his client had been a part of every decision involved in the case, she was "having a difficulty staying on point."

They also said Mary Winkler wanted to try to protect her three young daughters from painful details that would emerge at such a hearing.

"We feel it does no one any good to hear bad things said about the mother of children. We don't feel that it does anyone any good to hear gruesome things about their late father," Farese said.

The case now goes to the grand jury, which will meet in June to determine if there is enough evidence to support the murder charges.

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Authorities have said Mary Winkler, 32, confessed to shooting her 31-year-old husband Matthew Winkler and leaving town with the couple's three children. The minister was found dead in the church parsonage.

Click here to read Mary Winkler's arrest warrant and legal affidavit (pdf).

The couple's children were among about 500 people who attended funeral services Tuesday for Matthew Winkler at the Fourth Street Church of Christ in Selmer. Matthew Winkler was buried in Carroll County after his funeral.

Matthew Winkler's father, Dan Winkler, also a minister, officiated at the funeral and burial.

"Our family isn't the first to go through something like this," he told an estimated 250 mourners at the Carroll County Memorial Gardens. "King David lost two sons at the hands of others. God himself knows what this is like."

Dan Winkler closed the 15-minute ceremony with a prayer and hugged and kissed his three granddaughters, ages one, six and eight.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.