|Marcia Gayle Kelly|
|Born||December 21, 1970|
|Criminal penalty||Life without parole|
Marcia Gayle Kelly (born December 21, 1970) is a convicted American female murderer serving life without parole for orchestrating the murder of her husband James. She is incarcerated at the Mountain View Unit in Gatesville, Texas, and her Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) Offender number is #1381826.
On October 23, 2005, truck driver James Kelly was shot to death in his Cushing, Texas home. Initially, his stepdaughter Shaina Sepulvado and her friends Dallas Christian and Colton Weir were the prime suspects. All three were later charged in Kelly's death. When interviewed, however, Kelly's widow, Marcia, was implicated in his death. Weir said that Shaina and Marcia had orchestrated the plot to have Kelly murdered, and that Weir had been promised a vehicle as payment for committing the crime. In a police statement, Marcia admitted that she overheard some of the juveniles make statements about wanting to kill her husband, but did not admit to offering them anything to kill her husband. On October 26, 2005, Marcia was charged with capital murder.
On July 31, 2006, Marcia Kelly's murder trial began. At the trial, prosecutors presented the jury with what they believed to be the motive. Marcia had a $100,000 life insurance policy on James. Prosecutors also stated that Marcia and James argued on how to punish Marcia's unruly daughter Shaina. Other testimony was presented at the trial from men who claimed Marcia had also solicited them to kill her husband, along with that of Colton Weir.
Marcia did not testify in her own defense, but her daughter Shaina did take the stand to defend her mother. On the stand, Shaina testified that she was responsible for the murder and that her mother was not involved. Shaina had also claimed that James had been beating and molesting her. Jurors did not believe her, and Marcia was convicted of capital murder.
Following her conviction, Marcia was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. While the capital murder charge could have allowed for a death sentence, the Nacogdoches County district attorney had not sought the death penalty against her.
Colton Weir and Shaina Sepulvado were each convicted of the capital murder of James Kelly at separate subsequent trials in Nacogdoches County, Texas; they are each serving life without parole. Dallas Christian pleaded guilty to murder and was sentenced to 40 years on June 23, 2008. Two other males, Billy Loftin and Gary Batchelor, were convicted of lesser charges of tampering with evidence, in connection with James Kelly's death.
Marcia Kelly's conviction was affirmed by the Twelfth District Court of Appeals on January 23, 2008. Marcia still maintains her innocence and is further appealing her conviction.
In January 2015, Weir and Sepulvado - as a result of Miller v. Alabama - were each re-sentenced to life with parole eligibility after 40 years. They will each become eligible on 24 October 2045.
In the Media
Marcia's case was featured on the Oxygen Network series Snapped in March 2011; the program contained testimony from Marcia and Shaina. The case also appeared on the Investigation Discovery series Redrum in 2013; the program contained statements from Shaina and Colton; Investigation Discovery re-visited the case in the 2014 Fatal Vows episode, "Murder by Proxy."
- "Marcia Gayle Kelly." Texas Prison Inmates > Mountain View Unit. The Texas Tribune, 14 Jan 2011. Web. 14 Apr 2011.
- Cervantez, Jessica. "Day Two of a Murder for Hire Trial." KTRE.com Lufkin and Nacogdoches. 03 Aug 2006. Web. 14 Apr 2011
- Boudreaux, Tyesha. "Christian Pleads Guilty." DailySentinel.com. 03 Jun 2008. Web. 14 Apr. 2011.
- McCollum, Donna. "Guilty Verdict Returned in Capital Murder Trial." KTRE.com Lufkin and Nacogdoches. 12 Apr 2007. Web. 14 Apr 2011.
- "Kelly, Marcia Gayle" (Archive). Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Retrieved on December 28, 2015.