Oklahoma appeals court upholds Wagoner County woman's life sentence for 2011 murder

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- A state appeals court has upheld the life prison sentence of a 54-year-old woman who was convicted of first-degree murder in the shooting death of her husband.

The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals handed down the decision Monday in the case of Patricia Burney. Burney was convicted by a jury in Wagoner County of the February 2011 death of 53-year-old Arthur Burney. His body was found near his barn near Coweta.

Prosecutors say Patricia Burney paid her daughter's boyfriend $6,000 to kill Arthur Burney. A witness testified Patricia Burney said she wanted her husband dead because he was abusive to her.

The boyfriend, 21-year-old Michael Richardson, was sentenced to 28 years in prison after pleading guilty in 2012 to a second-degree murder charge in the case.

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