Coweta woman convicted in husband's murder
BY RHETT MORGAN World Staff Writer
Tuesday, March 06, 2012
3/06/12 at 9:03 PM
WAGONER — A Wagoner County jury on Tuesday night convicted a Coweta woman of first-degree murder and recommended a life-without-parole sentence in connection with the slaying of her husband about a year ago.
Jurors deliberated roughly 90 minutes before finding Patricia Burney, 52, guilty of killing Arthur Burney, 53, whose body was discovered Feb. 18, 2011, in a barn at his Coweta home, a spokeswoman in District Judge Darrell Shepherd’s office said.
Shepherd scheduled an April 23 sentencing for Patricia Burney, who didn’t testify in her defense, the spokeswoman said.
The Burneys’ daughter, Michelle Burney, 15, and her boyfriend, Michael Richardson, who turns 19 on Sunday, also were charged with first-degree murder in the fatal shooting.
Michelle Burney’s adult charge was dismissed this summer and refiled in juvenile court.
The teenager pleaded guilty to the murder charge and was placed in the custody of the Office of Juvenile Affairs, Assistant District Attorney Jack Thorp said last year.
Richardson is on a disposition docket set for April 3.
At a preliminary hearing in June, Richardson testified that he fatally shot Arthur Burney and that Patricia Burney gave him the rifle he used in the killing.
Richardson also testified that Patricia and Michelle Burney drove him from Oklahoma City and offered him as much as $6,000 to kill Arthur Burney.
After handing Richardson the rifle, Patricia Burney told her daughter to take him out back for some practice shots, he testified.
He then waited in a tack room in the barn and shot Arthur Burney, the teenager’s testimony indicated. Patricia Burney later promised him the entire $6,000 for the slaying, but he never collected the money, he told the court.
Michelle Burney testified that her mother wanted to kill Arthur Burney because he was verbally abusive and was “always mean to my mom.” The teenager said her mother “wanted him dead.”