Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2006

The Preacher's Wife

Parishioners of Fourth Street Church of Christ in Selmer, Tenn., knew something was wrong when their preacher, Matthew Winkler, did not show up for service on March 22. Concerned, they went to his home and found Winkler dead on his bedroom floor, shot through the back. His wife, Mary, and three children were missing. Mary was found with the children the next day in Alabama and confessed to killing her husband. In June, a grand jury indicted Mary on charges of first-degree murder. She has been out on bond since August, lives with a family friend in McMinville, Tenn., and works in a dry cleaning business owned by another friend. She does not see her children, who live with their paternal grandparents in Huntington, Tenn. Her family and friends say domestic abuse may have been a factor in the killing.