Tahlequah woman gets a 28 year sentence

Saturday, August 14th 2004, 5:45 pm
By: News On 6

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. (AP) -- A Cherokee County judge has sentenced a woman to 28 years in prison for shooting and killing her husband last year.

Associate District Judge Darrell Shepherd sentenced Pearl Lynne Smith on a second-degree murder conviction after a jury opted for a punishment lesser than first-degree murder at a June trial.

49-year-old Smith was accused of killing Thomas Smith in June 2003 at the couple's rural home. She told authorities that she shot her husband after an argument.

A neighbor who came to the home after the shooting told investigators that he found Thomas Smith wounded and not breathing.

Pearl Smith reportedly told the neighbor that she went to her bedroom after an argument, got a 9 mm handgun and shot her husband.

Smith told jurors that she acted in self-defense and had been physically abused by her husband for years.

Prosecutors, however, noted that she could not produce police reports or hospital records to back her claims.