Former beauty queen reportedly takes plea deal in murder case

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A former beauty queen who was once married to the owner of a Kentucky Derby-winning thoroughbred has reportedly struck a deal with prosecutors who were preparing to try her for allegedly luring a man to his death nearly a decade ago.

The Seattle Times reports that Peggy Sue Thomas, 47, will spend four years in prison when she is sentenced next month on charges of first-degree rendering criminal assistance. Thomas, who was crowned Ms. Washington in 2000, had faced a first-degree murder charge in the death of Russel Douglas, who was found fatally shot two days after Christmas 2003.

Thomas, a former beautician, once worked at a salon owned by Douglas’ wife, and allegedly plotted with her then-boyfriend, James Huden, to kill Douglas.

Huden was arrested in Mexico in June 2011 and Thomas was arrested a month later in Farmington, N.M., on her $500,000 houseboat named “Off the Hook.” Huden was later convicted of first-degree murder in Island County Superior Court last summer and sentenced to 80 years in prison.

The oft-married Thomas was driving a limousine in Las Vegas when she met Alaska oil millionaire Mark Allen and quit her job at Presidential Limo, where she worked from 2003 to 2006, after the couple married, according to the Seattle Weekly. But the marriage didn’t last long. In 2009, during the couple’s contentious divorce, Allen’s horse, Mine That Bird, won the Kentucky Derby, the Weekly reported.

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