Man gets life in prison for murder of NBA's Lorenzen Wright

Lorenzen Wright
Posted at 7:02 PM, Mar 21, 2022

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — A jury has convicted a Tennessee man in the slaying of former NBA player Lorenzen Wright, whose bullet-riddled body was found in a field nearly 12 years ago in his hometown of Memphis.

The jury found Billy Ray Turner guilty of first-degree murder, attempted murder, and conspiracy Monday in the death of Wright.

The judge sentenced Turner to life in prison for the murder conviction.

Turner already pleaded guilty to a gun charge related to Wright’s shooting. He is already serving a 16-year sentence, the Associated Press reported.

The 6-foot, 11-inch Wright played 13 seasons in the NBA before retiring after the 2008-2009 season.

Wright's slaying is one of Memphis's most highly publicized murder cases.

Wright had been missing for 10 days before his decomposing body was riddled with bullet wounds in a swampy field in east Memphis on July 28, 2010.

Turner and Wright's ex-wife Sherra Wright were charged in December 2017 for the murder of the father of six.

In July 2019, Sherra Wright pled guilty to the facilitation of murder and was sentenced to 30 years in prison.

According to prosecutors, Sherra Wright recruited Turner and her cousin Jimmie Martin to murder the former NBA player.

Martin testified that the two men initially were supposed to kill him in Atlanta, but that did not happen after they found someone else sleeping in his condo and left without killing anyone.

When Lorenzen Wright traveled to Memphis from Atlanta, Martin said that Sherra Wright lured her ex-husband to the field by telling him that she was meeting someone there to get some money.

Martin said that's when Sherra Wright and Turner ambushed her ex-husband, chasing him before shooting him in the field.