H O U S T O N, March 3, 2004 -- A Houston woman who stabbed her husband nearly 200 times last year was convicted of murder today as a jury rejected her self-defense claims.
Prosecutors said Susan Wright lured her husband, Jeff, into bed with a promise of sex, tied him up and stabbed him 193 times. They said she wanted to collect thousands of dollars in life insurance.
Wright's defense said she suffered from years of abuse. She testified that she acted in self-defense, taking a knife away from her husband after he raped her.
Wright said she stabbed her husband repeatedly but then tied him to the bed because she believed he was still alive. However, today, the jury rejected Wright's defense and convicted her of murder after less than a full day of deliberations, which began late Tuesday.
Wright could be sentenced to up to 99 years in prison.
‘I Couldn't Stop’
Wright, 27, took the stand in her own defense Monday and Tuesday, saying she stabbed the father of her two children in self-defense on the night of Jan. 13, 2003.
Wright said she and her husband of five years appeared to be the perfect couple in public. In private, however, Wright said their marriage was anything but perfect.
"I couldn't stop stabbing him; I couldn't stop," Wright testified as she cried. "I knew as soon as I stopped, he was going to get the knife back and he wasgoing to kill me. I didn't want to die."
Wright claimed her husband was a monster who beat her, emotionally abused her and accused her of cheating. She said the night he died was the first time she fought back.
She fended off accusations Tuesday from prosecutor Kelly Siegler that her tears were faked for the jury's benefit.
"I haven't cried on cue once," Wright said.
Wright is said to have buried her husband's body under their backyard patio, where her husband had been digging a hole to install a fountain. The body was discovered when her lawyer notified authorities a week after the man's death.During the trial, in an unusual courtroom demonstration, prosecutors brought the Wrights' bed into the courtroom in an effort to show the jury how they believe her husband was killed.
The defense put several witness on the stand who say they witnessed Wright's bruises, including Sue Wyche, her mother. She backed her daughter's claim of self-defense.
ABCNEWS' Houston affiliate, KTRK, contributed to this Good Morning America report.