Mary Winkler: Judge won’t lower bond for minister’s wife

SELMER, Tenn. — A judge has refused to lower a $750,000 bond set for a woman accused of killing her husband, a small-town Church of Christ minister.

Mary Winkler, 32, has been held since March 23, the day after her husband, Matthew Winkler, 31, was found dead of a shotgun wound at their residence in Selmer, about 80 miles east of Memphis.

Winkler’s first-degree murder trial is set for Oct. 30.

In a written order issued Monday, Judge Weber McCraw ruled that the bond he set July 7 is “fair and reasonable” and will stand.

McCraw noted that Winkler fled Tennessee with her three young daughters the day her husband’s body was found. They were picked up by police the next day in Orange Beach, Ala., about 340 miles from Selmer.

Winkler’s attorney, Steve Farese, sought the reduction because he said his client was financially unable to post bond. Prosecutors had opposed bond.

Winkler told police she shot her husband in the back with a shotgun as he lay in bed on the morning of March 22 following an evening of arguments over finances and other family matters.

Prosecutors refuse to say if they will seek the death penalty and have until 30 days before trial to make such a decision.

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AP, via, USA
Aug. 1, 2006

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