A man in Tennessee has been charged in the 2010 slaying of ex-NBA player Lorenzen Wright, according to authorities on Tuesday.
Billy Turner was charged Tuesday in the mysterious killing of Wright, who played 13 seasons in the NBA for the Atlanta Hawks, Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, Sacramento Kings, and Cleveland Cavaliers. Wright was 34 when he died.
Turner, 46, is being held now on $1 million bond in the case, Shelby County District Attorney General Amy Weirich told reporters, according to WREG. Authorities last month said they recovered the gun used to kill Wright in a Walnut, Mississippi, lake.
“This is just an indictment. Mr. Turner will have his day in court. He is presumed innocent,” Weirich told WREG. He was arrested at the Express Mart on Highway 72 in Collierville, Tennessee.
A friend who lived near Turner told the station that he’s a church deacon and wouldn’t do something like this. “Not Billy Ray,” he said. “I find that hard to believe.”
Wright, a father of six, was seen last on July 18, 2010, after he left the home of his ex-wife, who told police that she saw him leave carrying a box of drugs and money, Fox News reported.
She overheard Wright telling someone on the phone that he was going to “flip something for $110,000,” according to an affidavit obtained by Fox.
A police dispatcher in the suburb of Germantown got a call from the former NBA player’s cellphone and heard noises like gunshots before the call dropped. But a patrol officer wasn’t sent to the location until days later, Fox reported.
According to the New York Post, his body was found after about a week.
Wright’s mother filed a missing-persons report with Collierville police on July 22, 2010, reported The Associated Press.
Wright’s mother, Deborah Marion, told WREG about how she felt after Turner was arrested.
“I hope he gets 70 years in the penitentiary. I don’t want him to die, dying’s too good, that’s too easy. Anybody can die. I want him to suffer like I suffered,” she said.
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