Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Michigan man sentenced to life without parole in shotgun murder of wife

Calhoun Couty Circuit Judge Conrad Sindt sentenced a man who murdered his wife to life without parole in a Branch County, MI courtroom Friday, December 18. 40 year old Thomas Foley was sentenced to the mandatory life without parole sentence for the shotgun murder of Dee Dee Foley, 41 on February 7, 2009.

Foley was convicted by a jury the day after Thanksgiving of shooting and killing his wife in the shower in their rural farmhouse while the couple's son and a friend played outside. Police speculate that Foley used a 12-gauge shotgun he took months before from the home of his brother-in-law.

Prosecutors told the jury he killed Dee Dee Foley, a Union City teacher, about 3 p.m., and only two hours before the family was to celebrate their son's 10th birthday at a party at the home of friends.

When Dee Dee Foley didn't arrive at the party, Tom Foley returned to the home and called police about 5:20 p.m. and said he found her dead. A month later Michigan State Police arrested Foley and he was found guilty after a three-week trial in Coldwater.

Before the sentencing, Calhoun Couty Circuit Judge Conrad Sindt, who presided over the trial, agreed to conduct a hearing after defense attorney J. Thomas Schaeffer said a woman came forward the day after the verdict and said she saw a car with a young man driving leaving the Foley driveway about 4:45 p.m. the day of the murder. A couple testified for the defense at trial they passed the house about 4 p.m. and also saw a white car leaving.

Prosecutor Terri Norris argued against Schaeffer's motion for a new trial and said the new witness is just cumulative and should not be heard. But while Sindt would not dismiss the jury verdict, he said the new witness should be examined under oath as part of Schaeffer's motion for a new trial.

Foley said about his wife, "I love her with all my heart and I never tried to hurt her. She is my best friend. There was no way, no way in hell, no way in heaven that I did this to her. I looked for justice in this trial and I didn't find it. I just want the person who did this to her to be found. There is no way I planned to kill my best friend, the mother of my child."

However, Marilyn Shiery, the victim's mother (and perpetrator's mother-in-law) said that "God and the world, including this family, would have forgiven you your affairs, your ending your marriage, you desire to move but do not ever ask for forgiveness for this hideous murder and the aftermath you and you alone created. There is no forgiveness."
She also made this statement prior to Foley's sentencing.
  We can now believe you were not only not in love with Dar, but were never in love with anyone including yours and Dar's son. We also now know you were and are in love with only yourself and your selfish wants. Now when your son says, 'Grandma, I think my Dad killed my mom and he did it when he sent us outdoors, but I don't know why,' I will be able to truthfully answer him 'Because he wanted everything your mother stood for, he just didn't want her in the picture. You were devious, misleading, zealously hiding your dark side and deluded enough to think you could get away with murdering her. You took her father's gun from her brother's home to kill his sister.

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