Defendant in Wright case pleads guilty to gun charge

A Collierville man charged in the 2010 murder of former Memphis basketball player Lorenzen Wright pleaded guilty Monday to one count of being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.

According to an indictment, on Dec. 5, 2017, defendant Billy Ray Turner was in possession of a shotgun, a prohibited weapon since he has a 1992 felony conviction of reckless endangerment with a deadly weapon.

A similar gun charge was dismissed Monday, while a third remains pending.

Turner, 48, pleaded open to the court with no sentencing agreement.

He faces 12 to 20 years in prison when he is sentenced on July 26 by Criminal Court Judge Lee Coffee.

Turner also faces first-degree murder charges in the death of Wright, whose former wife, Sherra Wright, is a co-defendant. The trial is set for Sept. 16.

The case was handled by Chief Prosecutor Paul Hagerman and Asst. Dist. Atty. Austin Scofield of the DA’s Crime Strategies Prosecution Unit, which incorporates and expands the work of the Multi-Agency Gang Unit, the Organized Crime Unit, Project Safe Neighborhood/Gundone, GunStat, the Safe Streets Task Force and the Violent Crime Unit.