|San Jacinto News-Times - Local News
Stories Added - November 2008
Copyright 2008 - Polk County Publishing Company
Winfrey sentenced to life
San Jacinto News- Times - November 2008
COLDSPRING -- Twenty-yearold Megan Winfrey was given a life sentence Monday for capital murder and 45 years for conspiracy to commit murder by 411th Judicial District Judge Robert Hill Trapp. The sentence came nearly one month following her Coldspring trial for the brutal slaying of Willow Springs resident Murray Burr on Aug. 6, 2004. Just 16 years old at the time of the murder, she is the second to be tried and convicted of Burr’s death. Her father, Richard, Sr., was tried in November of 2007 and sentenced to 75 years in prison for his part in Burr’s murder. Her brother, Richard Winfrey, Jr., is scheduled to face a trial in 2009 if he does not accept a plea bargain before that time, according to San Jacinto County Criminal District Attorney Bill Burnett. Her sentences will run concurrently, Burnett said. Burnett said she will serve 40 years before being eligible to request payroll. Commenting on the trial, Burnett said, “This case has gone on over four years and that’s very unusual for a capital murder case. After two years we had an inmate come forward with new information. Then, when we were getting ready to go to trial an old friend of Megan’s called and said he had information about the murder. Then, on the last day of the trial Winfrey called a witness.” Winfrey trial From page 1A The witness she called was her former husband, Christopher Hammond, who was added to the witness list during the trial by the prosecution but was never called to testify. During her trial Megan testifi ed that she didn’t want Burr dead or want to rob him. “I wasn’t aware he had a lot of money. He was a janitor,” she said. She denied testimony presented against her, saying she didn’t know why the witnesses were lying about her. When asked by Burnett why all the evidence pointed to her, Winfrey replied, “I don’t see any that points to me except testimony and dog scents. Because I was 16 and wild once doesn’t make me a killer.” Testimony given by Ft. Bend County Canine Scent Officer Keith Pickett indicated that blood hounds identifi ed skin cells belonging to Megan, her father and brother in a lineup from clothing Burr was wearing on the night of his murder. “Scientifi c evidence tied three Winfreys to clothing Burr was wearing at the time of his murder. Dog evidence is good enough for the FBI and law enforcement agencies across Texas. It’s good enough to be accepted in appellate courts,” Burnett told the jury during the trial. The jury took less than four hours to convict last month. Winfrey opted to have the judge access punishment.