Mar 27, 2006

Mary Winkler Arraigned In Husband's Murder

Left: Mrs. Winkler in the Selma jail; photo courtesy of Associated Press

(Selmer, TN) Mary Winkler, the woman accused of shooting her preacher husband to death last week, was formally charged today with first-degree murder at her arraignment hearing. Mrs. Winkler did not enter a formal plea.

Mary Winkler was dressed in an orange prison robe and wore ankle shackles. As she entered the coutroom she was holding her attorney's hand.

Winkler kept her head down during her court appearance and said little, with the exception of a "no sir" when General Sessions Court Judge Bob Gray asked if she had any questions.

Judge Gray will make a decision on bail at the preliminary hearing, which is set for Thursday.

Defense attorney Steve Farese declined to speculate on Mrs. Winkler's motives for shooting her husband.

"There are persistently going to be rumors about why this happened, how this happened … but we're not allowed to comment," Farese said. "Our defense right now is every defense known to man."

Farese said that he had not yet read Mrs. Winkler's "alleged confession," nor had he reviewed the formal charges brought against the wife of the slain minister.

"We'll have to see how this thing plays out," said Farese.


-Sepp said...

Is this woman getting way too much press or what?

historymike said...

In a way she is, Sepp.

However, I think that people are completely dumbfounded at what happened to a seemingly "perfect" family.

I began posting about this story on Friday because I was mesmerized by the mystery. Since that time my fascination with the case has only grown.

I also have to say that traffic on my blog has increased tenfold in the last four days. There is not a hotter topic on the Internet right now; people can't seem to get enough information on this puzzling case.

I suspect that this will be the biggest trial of the decade, and probably the biggest since the OJ trial.

People are riveted to their TVs and monitors because this case just does not seem to make sense.

How could a family in which everything seemed to be going so well wind up so shattered?

Stephanie said...


Maybe it's that I don't watch television and I've been reading newspapers more selectively lately, but you're the only newssource I've seen covering this story.

historymike said...

Must be a supply-and-demand phenomenon, Stephanie. There are simply millions of people searching for answers to this mystery, and the mainstream media is relying largely on the same AP wire stories.

Stephanie said...

I'm not objecting...I just thought you might like to know you're somebody's first on this story!

historymike said...

I must be a LOT of somebody's firsts, based on the insane traffic this site is generating (over 12,000 hits on Monday 3-27 so far).

Not to toot my own horn, but maybe the reason the traffic is so high is because I have put all of this information in one place, rather than having it scattered all over the Web.

Stephanie said...

Probably a significant factor. You're also fairly good about unbiased reporting, which seems more and more rare these days.

historymike said...

(virtual blush at compliment)

Thanks, Steph. I try to keep "news" and "opinion" separated as much as I can on this site. If I am doing a straight news story here I save the commentary for the comments section.

-Sepp said...

You are pretty even handed on this site HM. The daily local could take some pointers in non-agendizing from you and then actually start selling papers again. Any new news about the union delema on Superior st?

Stephanie said...

You are very welcome, Mike!

historymike said...

Phew! Having trouble keeping up with the flood of traffic. I had no idea last Friday that this story would turn into an avalanche of blog traffic; I just found the story to be incredibly compelling.

My site, on an average day, has been drawing about 250 unique visitors and perhaps 525 total hits.

Today (at 9:49 PM EST) 2,675 uniques have visited, and total traffic is just under 7,000 hits.


I have had to hang out at other blogs, like Liberal Common Sense, to take a break from the zaniness here.

historymike said...

Thanks too, Sepp, for recognizing my efforts to get all sides of the story.

I have some issues about which I am passionate, but I find it difficult to "belong" to any political party. None of them seem to share with me enough common beliefs for me to get over the items with which I disagree.

For example, I am pro-Second Amendment, which puts me at odds with many Dems. I am pro-choice, whih is anathema among many in the GOP.

I favor a more proactive approach to the environment, which could make me a Green, but my pragmatic experience as a business owner makes the Green Party seem an overly-idealistic dream.

Besides, parties tend to dilute intelligent thought down to such a mindless pap that I am not even sure what they stand for.

Most people have enough intelligence to understand policy. If a party ever comes along that respects the innate wisdom and sensibilities of the general public, the other parties will be in deep trouble.

The smartest man I know is my 90-year old grandfather, who was formally educated only up through high school. This man can fix anything that breaks, and he can instantly summarize complicated concepts in a deceptively-folksy manner.

I remember a time when I was in college and was slogging through my second economics class. A news story came on about inflation, and my grandfather began to complain about the Reagan administration's attempts to bring inflation down.

"Goddammit!" he exclaimed. "The only reason Reagan wants to kep inflation low is for his pals on Wall Street. The average person is not hurt by inflation."

At the time I just chalked this statement up as an old man's grumpiness. Surely my monetarist professors - devotees of Milton Friedman - knew more than my kindly grandfather.

It was many years before I reexamined this statement and realized that my grandfather was right. The parties most worried about inflation are the wealthy elites.

In a Keynesian sense, inflation could be described in terms of increases in demand that drive prices upwards. Suppliers become aware that they have more power over pricing, thus causing increases in revenue, which then leads to an increase in employment.

Higher employment can lead to both a further increase in consumer demand and (the scariest of all scenarios to American oligarchs) an awareness by workers of an increase in power over wages.

Anyways, the point of this digression is that brilliance can be found in many people who have never set foot in a college classroom.

And I am sure that my grandfather would have said all of this more effectively in about twenty words.


Stephanie said...

I think I'd like to meet your grandfather!