SELMER, Tenn. – A minister's wife convicted of killing her husband will ask for a new trial when she returns to court for sentencing on Friday, a defense lawyer said Tuesday.
Mary Winkler faces up to six years in prison for the shooting of her husband, Matthew Winkler, in the back with a shotgun in March 2006.
A jury convicted the 33-year-old in April of voluntary manslaughter, a lesser charge than murder, following testimony she had been physically and mentally abused by her husband.
Winkler's petition was filed Friday with Judge Weber McCraw, who presided over her trial and will decide on her sentence.
Winkler argues that McCraw wrongly rejected several defense motions during the trial, including attempts to exclude from evidence items seized from her residence and testimony on her personal finances.
If granted a new trial, Winkler could not be recharged with murder, since the jury acquitted her of that charge, said defense lawyer Steve Farese.
"It's a double-jeopardy type of argument," said Farese.
A message left for District Attorney General Michael Dunavant after business hours on Tuesday was not immediately returned.
Matthew Winkler, the pulpit minister at Fourth Street Church of Christ in Selmer, was killed at the church parsonage where he and his wife lived with their three young daughters.
Mary Winkler is also in a legal fight with her husband's parents, Dan and Diane Winkler, about the custody of those daughters, now ages 9, 7 and 2.