Judge requests TBI expedite DNA testing in Lorenzen Wright murder case

Attorneys await decisions on filed motions

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Sherra Wright and Billy Turner, accused of killing former Memphis Grizzlies star Lorenzen Wright, made another court appearance Friday morning.

Sherra Wright, Lorenzen’s ex-wife, and Turner were both charged with Lorenzen Wright’s 2010 murder in 2017.

The murder trial is scheduled for September 16, but defense attorneys have filed a host of motions in preparation for the case--including a motion to suppress communications derived from wiretap and a motion to change the venue or bring jurors from a separate county.

Both Wright and Turner’s attorneys say they want a fair trial. However, Wright’s attorney Juni Ganguli says a change of venue is especially important because he’s seen an overwhelming amount of negative comments on social media toward his client.

“When a child is killed or an innocent woman is killed, that doesn’t generate the sort of hatred that there is for Sherra on social media, and I can’t explain why,” Ganguli said.

Friday, Judge Lee Coffee weighed-in on the change of venue request.

“Shelby County is the most inclusive, the most diverse county in the state of Tennessee, maybe in the whole country," Coffee said. "And I would ask that lawyers perhaps not underestimate the ability for jurors in Shelby County to be fair to both sides.”

Attorneys for Wright, Turner await decision on pre-trial motions

Deborah Marion, Lorenzen Wright’s mother, said it doesn’t matter where the trial happens, as long as her son gets justice.

“I don’t care where they go," she said. "They can go to Chinatown, it’s gonna be the same verdict.”

Judge Coffee will decide which motions will and will NOT be granted, when Wright and Turner return to court May 28.

Friday, Coffee had a strong message for TBI agents. He said he wants the DNA testing for the case to be expedited so it won’t affect the upcoming September trial.

“Let them know that whatever is pending, testing at TBI that it needs to be done immediately. Tell them that Judge Coffee is ordering that it be done,” said Judge Coffee.

During the hearing, Judge Coffee also set a separate trial date for Billy Turner’s gun charges.

That action takes place June 17.

Copyright 2019 WMC. All rights reserved.