Paul Gillette trial begins in Amarillo - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Paul Gillette trial begins in Amarillo

AMARILLO, TX- Paul Gillette entered a plea of not guilty in Potter County's 47th district court Monday.

Gillette sat emotionless in court while being read the first degree murder charges he faces.

He's accused of beating and strangling his wife, Sherri inside their home on the 2000 block of Las Tecovas St. near Bushland.

Her body was found in the early morning hours of Aug. 22, 2010.

Sheriff's deputies were tipped off to her home when a witness on the phone with Sherri as she pulled into her garaged said their call ended abruptly.

When authorities arrived, they found her body on the floorboard of her SUV.

She had apparently been beaten and strangled.

The prosecutor says Gillette was sitting inside her garage when deputies arrived.

He was taken into custody without incident.

Prosecutors indicate a marriage in crisis and financial distress as motives for murder.

At the time his wife was killed, the couple were in the process of getting a divorce.

Also, Gillette had just been released from prison, serving 30 months on a 2007 conviction for structuring financial transactions to avoid an audit with his former career as a home builder.

Gillette had also filed for bankruptcy 3 times prior to his wife's death.

Now, it will be up to a jury to decide whether greed and the threat of a divorce drove him over the edge.

Hoping for a conviction, the prosecutor says she'll be presenting DNA recovered from a scratch Paul Gillette had on his eye on the night of her murder.

The prosecution also obtained surveillance video from a nearby home which they say will paint a picture of the events leading up to Sherri's death.

The trial resumes at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday.

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