Mary Winkler Murder Trial: Timeline For Day 6 - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Mary Winkler Murder Trial: Timeline For Day 6

The following is a timeline for the sixth day of the murder trial for Mary Winkler, who is accused of fatally shooting her preacher husband Matthew Winkler in his sleep. The shooting took place in the parsonage of Fourth Street Church of Christ in Selmer, a West Tennessee town.

NOTE: Some of the testimony may be graphic, sexual in nature

5:05   Farese says he spent 3 days of his life listening to that crap!!!!  He was referring to the bank statements.  He says state said they didn't have to prove a motive - but they spent 3 days trying to prove the bank stuff was a motive. 

Farese tells the jury that if she gets 8 years or above, they can permanently get rid of her parental rights. He tells the jury he wants them all to hold the gun and feel how heavy it is, feel the trigger pull, hear the racking, and figure out how to load it.


Leslie Ballin tells the jury to open their eyes to the truth. Ballin says this process began more than a week ago with jury selection. We need facts in this courtroom. Ballin tells the jury to think about what it was like to walk in Mary's shoes - she walked on egg shells.

Ballin once again goes over the definition of 1st degree murder.

Steve Farese does the 2nd part of the defense close. Farese begins quoting Star Trek: The Next Generation - he makes the comparison between Mary and the Borg.

Farese talks about the Democratic National Convention in 1968 - how the whole world was watching. Farese tells the jury - the whole world is watching. This is not just about Mary and Matthew Winkler. This is about a problem we have in this country - it's domestic abuse. Farese says the whole world is watching. The world sees TN as a bunch of bumbling idiots. Farese says Matthew Winkler did not deserve to die.

4:07 - Sidebar -- Quick break so the defense can get ready


4:05- Prosecution closing arguments end.

4:00- He discusses her testimony of abuse. He says Matthew did not abuse Mary or the girls... maybe Mary was controlled. He says that maybe she needed control because she went crazy with the checks.

3:55- He discusses the dental visit and the lack of medical evidence of abuse.

He talks about Patricia's testimony... the loud boom, Mary and Matthew, and that Matthew was alive and moaning. He tells the jury that she was not coached because she said Matthew was face down and all the photos show him face up. He discusses the unplugged telephone. Patricia said the telephone was on the table where it always was. If she had been coached, her testimony would have been consistent with the photos. He submits that Mary closed the door after Patricia came to the door, rolled him over, wiped his mouth, he said "why", and she said "I'm sorry".

3:52- Freeland explains voluntary manslaughter. He says there is no evidence that this was a killing while in a state of passion.

3:50- Freeland explains second degree murder -- shows a slide.

3:47- He says Mary is not the victim. He asks the jury for the first degree murder charge. He asks the jury to not have any sympathy for Mary Winkler.

3:30- Defense objects to a reference by Freeland to the orange tackle box in a factual way. He changed his statement to there was "testimony about an orange tackle box".

He discusses the shotgun wound. He discusses the damage the pellets caused in Matthew's body. He talks about the significance of Matthew's full bladder. He says Matthew did not get out of bed, because if he had he would have emptied his bladder.


Assistant District Attorney Walt Freeland begins his closing statements. He says if you get 12 honest folks who go back there and listen to instructions and look at the evidence, the system works. He talks about the media circus that they've been shielded from. He says there has been a lot of confusion, and he's sorry if he's contributed to that.

He then shows the jury the definition of first-degree premeditated murder. He shows what makes a killing "unlawful." The first thing is "he did not deserve to die," and Freeland says Matthew Winkler did not deserve to die.

He tells the jury that they've heard it was abuse or an accident. Freeland says these are theories that don't go together. If he deserved to die, it wasn't an accidental death.

He explains the difference between intelligent and intentional...saying that killing Matthew was not have been intelligent, but it was intentional.

He says the intent to kill can be present for any period of minute or one doesn't matter.

He discusses the bank/financial issues.

He displays a list of Mary's statements that he says prove premeditation.

He again explains what premeditation is.

2: 39- Break

2:38- No more witnesses, Closing arguments will begin after the break.

2:34- Farese, Jr. gives Patterson more "images" to view and determine if they are "thumbnails". He says that based upon his experience, he believes these to be thumbnails. He can not say for sure.

2:31- Patterson discusses his experience in investigating cases of pornography and those viewing child pornography. Farese Jr. did not refer that to this case. Images pulled from unallocated space could have been accessed frequently, but Patterson can not determine exact times/dates. Most images were thumbnails.

2:29 - Copies of images from the hard drive were sent to the defense via cd. Patterson clarifies that the "images" are indeed pictures. The copies that were sent to the defense were not complete and were not submitted until one month ago. Patterson explains that an error caused the hard drive copy to be incomplete. 14:22 - Defense attorney Steve Farese, Junior, cross-examines Patterson. They discuss how you can put a password protection on a computer. Patterson says the record from that computer shows that the only account used with any frequency was that of Matthew Winkler.

2:15 - Prosecution calls Howard Patterson - TBI Criminal Investigator -- to the stand as a rebuttal witness. He analyzed a hard drive that was previously analyzed by Tom Davis, who retired from the TBI. He looks at the images and confirms that they are the images that were pulled from the hard drive. Patterson testifies that there was no way to determine the date and time the pictures were downloaded. But, according to some other information about internet usage, it seems that they were downloaded on October 2005 & January 2006 for about an hour or less. Patterson said there was no password needed to log into the computer, but he couldn't verify if the images had been accessed by more than one person.

2:05:38 - Defense attorney Leslie Ballin cross-examines Mrs. Jones. She says she has not given any written statements. Brandy said she came into the courtroom after the first recess this morning. Brandy says the first person she told about the discussion of guns was Eddie Thompson's wife who was sitting next to her. She told her the story today - and that was the first time Brandy has ever told anyone about the discussion. She said she never had any reason to before. Brandy testifies that she hasn't called Mary since March 23, 2006. She's sent her a few letters and she's got a stack that Mary sent her.

Ballin asks her many questions about what she's seen about the case and who she has talked to. Brandy says she's never had another conversation -before today-about Mary and firearms. Brandy testifies that Mary told her that she did know how to use a gun. When Mary said on the stand she didn't know how to use a gun, it sparked Brandy's interest and she said something about it. Brandy says she hadn't read details about the case because she didn't want to know the details. It makes her sick at her stomach to know the details. Ballin asks if she was calling Mary a "he" when she said "HE was her best friend." Brandy says, "no, I said SHE was my best friend and HE was like a brother to me." Leslie says, "Oh, so now I understand." Brandy rolls her eyes.

2:02:58 - The prosecution calls Brandy Jones as a rebuttal witness. This is the second time she is testifying. She takes the stand at 14:03:32. Brandy testifies that her family was on a vacation together with Matthew & Mary's family in August of 2005, and they got into a conversation about having a gun in the home. Brandy says she was nervous about having one in her home, and Matthew said they had one in their home. Mary said it might be beneficial if Brandy went to a firing range to learn how to use it, and Matthew said he had taken Mary to the firing range and Mary agreed that was true. This conversation took place in August 2005.

2:02:19 - Steve Farese says the defense rests. They all approach the bench.

2:01 - The jury returns

12:52:54 - LUNCH BREAK

12:50:46 - Mary testifies that she knows it was an accident because "I don't want any of this to be at all." She says she had not had much sleep when she made the statements to police, and she hadn't had much to eat. She says it should have been evident that she was in shock by the tone of her voice she heard on the tape and by some of the statements that didn't make any sense. Mary says Matthew abused her physically, verbally, & sexually. She said she didn't tell anyone b/c she was afraid nobody would believe her. Farese said they still don't believe her.

12:49:20 - Defense attorney Steve Farese redirects the witness. She admits it's possible that Matthew could have been groaning while she was running out of the house and was in the carport. Mary testifies that she signed a lot of documents when she was in custody. She said she doesn't remember everything she signed, but anything they gave her, she signed.

12:44 - Mary says she recalls telling Stan Stabler she balanced on some pillows (standing). Mary says she recalls telling Stabler that this kind of action has "crossed minds" before. She says listening to the transcript helps her remember. She doesn't remember saying much of anything to Stabler or Carpenter, but after hearing the Stabler recording, she remembers it. She says she doesn't really remember saying it, and she doesn't know what she meant. Mary says she's been battling not to be "so dramatic" and trying to get his attention. Mary says she doesn't remember telling Stan Stabler it "wasn't just out of the blue." And she doesn't remember what context that was in. But, she remembers saying "my ugly came out" because it's something that she constantly says. She just doesn't remember many things specific in those 3 or 4 days. She does remember about Matthew suffocating Breanna and making coffee, but she doesn't remember how she came to shoot Matthew in the back.

12:41 - Mary testifies that she cares for the girls. Mary says she does know that Dan & Diane Winkler got therapists to work with the girls after Matthew was killed. Mary says her impression is that the AGAPE organization is a foster community who feels that it's better for a child to be adopted by a good Christian family if they're in a bad home. Mary says she understood the girls could talk to the counselor and be sure what they said would never get out. But, she has seen the notes from the counselor.

12:37:45 - Mary says Brandy Jones and her family lived with the Winklers for 2 months. She says she was happy at that time, but she doesn't remember the time frame. She agrees it was probably the winter of 2004-2005. Mary testifies that the abuse did not go on behind closed doors while they lived there. Brandy was working at a child abuse center called the Carl Perkins Center in February of 2006, and Mary did know that. Mary says she does know what a child abuse center is, and Mary thought enough of Brandy to write her a letter from jail asking for her support. Mary testifies that in the beginning Brandy was going through this with her, but at some point she stopped that.

12:20 - Mary says the part of the statement that says the alarm went off - she doesn't think that was true. She says the alarm did not go off that morning. Mary isn't sure if she told the TBI she left the room. She says the morning was a blur at the time she gave that statement. Mary say the shotgun was kept on a shelf of the closet or leaning against the wall on the shelf. She says Matthew didn't put the gun at the same place each time. Mary says she doesn't remember telling the agent the gun wasn't as loud as she thought it would be. But she does remember thinking that - she says she had never actually thought how loud it would be. She says it was a comparison to what she had seen or heard on TV. Mary says she did not see the blood spot on the bed. Mary says she may have told the TBI she saw blood on the floor. She says she saw bleeding on or around his mouth. She says she does not remember telling Matthew she was sorry - she doesn't remember telling the TBI agent that either. She says Matthew did not ask her why. She does not remember making that statement to the TBI. She does not recall saying Patricia came to the hallway and ask what was going on. She says she does not remember Matthew groaning. She says she part of her statement talking about stopping in Jackson, MS is true. Mary says she doesn't know how she found her way to Jackson, MS. She says they stayed one night - they picked the Fairfield Inn because it had an indoor swimming pool. She says she wasn't in such a fog that she was able to ask for directions - and that she managed to drive all that way without having an accident. She says the girls asked about their dad - she told them a man had hurt him and they had to get out. She wanted the girls to go with her because she thought that was going to be it. She is asked whether she put the shotgun shells in the van - she says she doesn't remember that. She says the gun went off - no one would believe her - and they would take her girls away. She says she just wanted to have them before that happened. Mary testified Matthew kicked her out of bed that morning - she remembered it - but did not tell the TBI. She didn't tell them b/c she didn't want to talk to them about the rest of the morning. Mary says she would say she was in a fog, but she was trying to do the best she could. She testifies that she knew what was going on. She made a conscious decision not to smear Matthew. Freeland asked how it would have smeared Matthew to say it was an accident, and why didn't she tell Chris Carpenter the gun accidentally go off. She says she was so beaten down, and at that time she was led to feel like she didn't have a family. She didn't imagine she'd ever get any kind of attorney, and if she had started talking about things, she'd have to talk about the way he was (12:36:40). That's what led her to get into that position to accidentally shoot Matthew Winkler. She says she just wanted to talk to him, and it was an accident. 12:16:23 - quick sidebar, and then they go over her statement to the TBI that was handwritten by the agent. She says she remembers talking to the TBI agent, but she doesn't remember what she said to him. Freeland points out that she doesn't mention anything about the bank in the statement.

12:10 - Mary has never shot a shotgun, but she knows what one is and she knows it's capable of inflicting death. Mary testifies that she knows what a trigger is, and knows that pulling a trigger is "what makes it go boom."

Mary says she got the pizza that night and he "let her have a piece." She and Matthew talked about the bank situation with Matthew that night. She told him he's got to go in there and talked about something being illegal. When they talked about this, she either spelled some or whispered it because Patricia and Allie might have been listening. Matthew said she must have misunderstood them. He wasn't upset, but he thought it was stupid on the bank's part. He didn't understand what in the world it could be.

12:05 - Mary talks about being a substitute. She read a book to Allie's class and did some board work with a class. It was very enjoyable. Mary says Amy called her that afternoon, and Matthew and Mary were calling on the phone. Mary says she did call her husband on the cell phone (to wake up) while she was a substitute teacher that day. She received calls from Matthew, a credit card company (she didn't answer that), and Amy Hollingsworth from Regions Bank. Mary says Amy upset her - when she called, the class was reading, and Mary couldn't talk. Amy said something was illegal, and all Mary could say was, "Thank you." Mary says no one had told her the same thing 2 weeks earlier. She did know she was going to be overdrawn by a few thousand dollars, but Matthew had perfect credit since nothing was in his name. So, he could get a loan.

Mary said she called the bank and spoke to Paulette Guest. She does not remember Paulette telling her she had done something illegal, but she remembers Paulette testifying to that. Mary says she called the bank as soon as she got out of school. Mary called the bank and Paulette answered. Mary asked to talk to Amy because Amy told her something was illegal, and Paulette said not to worry about it and just come on in the bank. Mary says Paulette is a good acquaintance of hers. She came to visit her in jail once.

12:01:22 - Freeland shows the timeline of the check kiting, and points out when she opened the post office box. Mary testifies that she remembers talking to Jana Hawkins at Regions Bank in the middle of March about the need to straighten out some things at the bank. Mary says she couldn't get Matthew to go with her. Mary testifies that she knew that something had to be done at the bank by March 23. Matthew died on March 22.

11:57:40 - Mary says Brandy Jones was her friend, until she chose not to believe her and support her through all this. Mary wouldn't consider Brandy to be her best friend, but they were friends. Mary says she befriended people as she went along, but she never made a friend she'd think of the way she though of her best friend in high school who she'd tell everything. She had friends she enjoyed being with, but there was no one she could ever open up to and confide in. Mary says she may have told Brandy that she was happy in February of 2006. It may have been her "public statement." Mary says "you don't understand - it may not be what I am thinking or feeling, but it was what I publicly said." It was to cover up her family and the problems they had. She told people stories because she was ashamed.

11:54 - Mary testifies that Matthew would point the shotgun at her in McMinnville when he was furious at her. The kids might have been asleep or at school when it happened. He'd point the shotgun at her either in the living room or the bedroom. The girls' rooms were on the other side of the house. She says the kids would have been in danger if that shotgun had fired. They were all in danger. Mary testifies that Matthew pointed the shotgun at her 3 or 4 times in Selmer while the girls were at school or while they were asleep in bed. He would be in the living room sitting in his green chair.

Mary said she felt the person behind the shotgun - Matthew - was capable of shooting her. The girls wouldn't have been hurt if he had used the gun b/c he was "capable."11:51 - Mary testifies that Dr. Drew Eason was a friend of Matthew's, and she had more of a mother of a patient/doctor relationship with him. They were friendly acquaintances. She saw him when her left jaw was swollen, and she told him she thought it could have been a spider bite. That was not true. Dr. Eason didn't think it was a spider bite, but he thought it was a tooth.

11:42:24 - Mary says the working computer in the house is in the front room. Mary was not denied access to the computer (unless Matthew was in the middle of a sermon or power point or e-mails, etc.). She says Matthew did use the computer for legitimate purposes. He also had a laptop provided wherever he worked, but she thinks he used the home computer, too, for work stuff. Mary says she also uses a computer - for e-mail, printshop, etc.

Mary testifies that she looked at the dirty pictures on the computer. Freeland asks if she would or wouldn't look at them. Mary says they were there, and then she would start looking at something else. Mary testifies that Matthew thought Mary would get aroused by looking at the pictures. She says it was "a weakness he had." The children never knew the pictures were on it, and they were never shown any dirty pictures. Freeland asked if there were problems in the marital bedroom and if he expressed some dissatisfaction. She said yes, and he expressed it by the constant changing scenarios and looks. Mary says she was pregnant with Breanna for one month in Selmer before she was born. Freeland asks if he showed her the dirty pictures after Breanna was born. She says yes, but that wasn't the first time. Mary testifies that Matthew did have some sex toys.

11:40:41 - Mary testifies that the spankings were applied by Matthew's belt. Some were excessive. She mentioned it to Matthew but no one else. She says Matthew didn't tell her to, but he affected her body language. He's the reason her body language called concern with the church elders.

11:39 - Mary testifies that Mrs. Winkler found out she was going to go to the dentist in Nashville by herself, and she offered to go with her (they met up at Tucker's Crossroads). On that day, he gave her pain medication and antibiotics.

11:37 - Mary says that Tim Parish always says she spells his name wrong. She sent him a copy of the anti-diarrhea medicine to Tim Parish because Matthew told her to. This was in 2005. Freeland asks if she's taking responsibility yet for sending out the note. She says yes.

11:35:05 - Mary says in 2002 she was on a softball team with Sandra Cantrell. Mary says she was able to tell Dr. Fisher something that wasn't true, and he believed her. Mary says there was some joking when her jaw swelled about the youth minister's wife getting a "shiner" on her eye. She went to Dr. Fisher 2 weeks later, but she told him it happened just a week ago.

11:31:40 - Mary says she asked for the divorce in McMinnville in 2002 - it was a very bad year. She and Brandy had sporadic communication when Mary lived in McMinnville. Mary did have female close friends in McMinnville. She was allowed to be friends with her sister Amanda, but that was not a regular event. Mary says when she has a friend, it may not be the dictionary definition you may think of. She doesn't have anyone to confide in - it's always a general acquaintance. She didn't share with anyone when she asked Matthew for a divorce. Freeland asks if Mary thought about what other options she had to just "get out" of the marriage. Mary testifies that she thought about running away, but he'd just come "get us." She says threats were made to her family and to her as well. He said if she ever ran away, he'd come and get her. Her other option would be to continue to pray to God for strength to get through.

11:26:33 - Mary talks about living in Pegram and going to Brandy & Glenn Jones's house while laughing. Mary says she was only laughing on the outside, but not on the inside. She says they couldn't tell something more was going on. Freeland asks if her good friends appeared to believe her when she was laughing off the situation, and she says yes. They had known Matthew for some time. She became friends with them after she and Matthew married.

Mary says even though earlier testimony of others involved Matthew having a reaction to a drug during the incident in Pegram, he wasn't taking any drugs. That night, Glenn Jones & Matthew's younger brother Jacob came over and spent the night with him. She asked them to spend the night because she was afraid, even though she was laughing to the public. She says she convinced them to come over and spend the night because she told them something had affected Matthew.

11:22 - Freeland asks if Matthew was a louder, more outgoing person than she is. She agrees. Mary says his yelling wasn't just Matthew being loud and boisterous - it was threatening, and there was a whole different look on his face. His actions led her to be afraid. She started being afraid in Pegram when he said he cut the brake lines. Freeland asks about when the yelling started a month or two into the marriage, and she testifies she was also scared then. That would have been in 1996.

Mary talks about when she told Stan Stabler she had self-esteem problems and her "ugly came out." Mary says today she does not think she had self-esteem in March of 2006. She defines self-esteem as being proud of yourself, you know who you are. She said there was nothing on March 24 that made her proud of herself.

11:20 - Freeland asks about Patricia's dislocated elbow. Mary said they took her to a clinic in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, when that happened, and she has a medical record of that. They were not investigated by DHS or anyone like that. Mary testifies that she hasn't said she has any reason to believe it was anything other than what he said it was. She thinks it shows that Matthew didn't know how strong he was.

11:16 - Mary testifies that she did enter sweepstakes in the mail - she filled out every one that came to the house. Matthew was aware of that, and it would have been a good thing for them financially if they had won any of the sweepstakes. Mary said she doubted the check that came in the mail that Freeland is referring to (the $4900 check). She said they had already received a check like that, and it turned out to be false. He shows her another check, and she said they got very excited when they got that check in the mail ($6455). But, she wasn't aware of any letter that came with the check telling them to deposit it and wire back some money to get more money. Mary says she was handed that check from Matthew, and she did not know how it came. They didn't celebrate - they just put it in the bank. Matthew said it wasn't a million dollars, but it was something. Mary said she didn't tell anyone - no one at the church, and she wasn't talking to her sisters at the time. She didn't talk to the Winklers regularly, so she didn't know if they knew. Mary says no one knew about the credit card debt they had. Freeland makes the point that they didn't call anyone to share the "good news" that they got the check.

11:14 - Freeland shows Mary the Saatchi & Saatchi check that was made out to her. It was for $4,900. Mary testifies that she remembers the check, but she does not recognize the letter that was found in her van in Orange Beach. She says it could have been in "our" van. She doesn't remember a letter coming with the check when she got it in the mail. She deposited the check.

11:11:50 - Assistant District Attorney Walt Freeland begins questioning Mary Winkler. She says she has not been coached on her demeanor on the witness stand. Freeland asks what did Matthew Winkler do to deserve to die. Mary says, "Nothing. No one made that decision." Mary says he did not deserve to die.

Mary says her marriage on April 20, 1996 was a good day in April. She says the marriage itself was not a bad thing - at least not initially.

10:57 Farese is finished - COURTROOM BREAK

10:55  Mary says she has told the jury the truth about what happened in her marriage and the events surrounding March 22nd.10:52:30 - The home where they lived was in the church's name. Their two vehicles were both in Matthew's name. Their minivan was a 2006 Toyota Sienna. Matthew was concerned the kids down the street were messing with their mail because Matthew had threatened their dog.  Mary is asked if she purposefully, intended to kill her husband - she says no sir.  She says she still loves her husband.  She says she didn't tell police because she was ashamed - she was worried about Matthew.  She didn't care about herself at that time - she only cared about her kids.

10:51:15 - Mary testifies that the checks that came in for the large amounts of money concerned her, and she told Matthew they should be careful. He told her to put them in her account in the bank. That was a different account than where the first check went.

10:48:15 - Mary says she has made telephone transfers and ATM machines. Matthew taught her how to do all that stuff. Mary says he was "brilliant." Mary testifies that in Mary & June 2002, she was pregnant, but they lost that baby. She was 9 weeks pregnant. She does not know why she lost the child.

Matthew told her where to put deposits, and she put them in the bank. The account that was only in her name at Union Planters in McMinnville was a computer glitch. When they were in Selmer, Matthew told her to start an account at the bank in Henderson only in her name. She doesn't know the real reason, but he said something about it being handy if she needed something while she was in school.

10:37 -- Mary says she does not remember getting a gun, but she does remember having a gun and holding a gun. She does not remember pointing a gun. She says she does not remember pulling the trigger and she didn't pull the trigger. Mary testifies that "something went off." At the time, she didn't know what it was. It sounded like a boom, and there was an awful smell. It smelled like nothing she's ever smelled before or since. After the gun went off, Mary says she ran as fast as she could to get out of the house because she thought Matthew would be mad at her and she didn't know what he was going to do to her. She got outside to the carport and realized no one was after her. She thought about the girls, but she didn't see anyone in the hallway. She saw Patricia out there, and she told her to go back to bed. Patricia may have asked what was going on. Mary testifies she went back into the bedroom and saw Matthew laying there on his back. He was dead. She saw some blood in his nose and mouth and ears. She wiped his mouth, but it just kept coming. She doesn't remember saying anything to him - she doesn't know. She didn't know for a fact what had happened. She just ran away. She got the girls in the van and they just drove. They had no reservations anywhere. She didn't know where she was going. She didn't have any clothes for her or the children, but she did have a pair of socks for Breanna. Mary remembers realizing the gun was in the van, but she doesn't remember how it got into the van. As she drove away, she knew the Winklers were out of town and she didn't think of her own family at that time in her life. They weren't her family. That was so ingrained in her. She thought she was going to Memphis to wait for the Winklers to go home, but she never saw Memphis. She didn't know where she was. She ended up in Jackson, Mississippi. The next day, she looked at a map and saw Alabama. She said the girls had never been to the beach before, so that was something to do. Patricia doesn't remember going to the beach when they lived in Louisiana. Mary says the purpose of going to the beach was to be together until the Winklers got back into town that weekend. She had way under $1000 cash on her. The cash she had was the cash Matthew had her get out of the bank. She had told her about the stuff at the bank and he was kind of confused, so he told her to go and just get out "as much as you can." That's why she had some cash on her.

10:33:15 - Mary says she woke up on March 22 when she heard Breanna crying and Matthew kicked her out of the bed. He got up, and then she got up and followed him. She says he was in Breanna's room "suffocating her" (pinching her nose). She asked Matthew if she could please have her. Matthew threw his arms up and just walked away from the crib. Matthew said he was tired of it. When he walked out of the door, he slammed the door frame with his open hand. Mary says she picked Breanna up and calmed her down, changed her diaper, found a pacifier, and put her back down and put her music on. She went back down easily. Mary said she was going to go make coffee, and she just wanted to talk to Matthew. She wanted him to stop being so mean. Mary testifies that she tried to talk to him, but he had gone back to the bedroom. She says Matthew liked to sleep as long as possible. She went back to the bedroom to talk to Matthew, but she didn't talk to him because she couldn't. She was scared of Matthew.

10:29:50 - Mary says Breanna was a year old at that time. She was also premature, and she only had 2 veins in her umbilical cord instead of 3, so the NICU took her for observation. She also had breathing problems. Mary says she wasn't whiny, but she was perfect. Her name was Breanna - Matthew's middle name was Brian. Her middle name - Eloise - came from Matthew's mom's mom (his grandmother). Matthew, Patricia, & Allie were all there during the ultrasound when they found out Breanna was going to be a girl. Matthew was very disappointed. He was silent, but Mary says his body language screamed it. When they were leaving, she was trying hard not to cry. Matthew told her to watch herself. When she got home, she had some private time to cry. Patricia asked her if Daddy wanted a boy. Mary says biologically it was Matthew's fault it wasn't a boy, but in their world it was her fault.

10:25:50 - Mary remembers the evening of March 21, 2006, and that day. She was at school that day and running errands with the girls later. While at school, she received a few calls but was unable to talk since she was sitting in a classroom. She did listen. Mary testifies that as a result of those phone calls - and others - she and Matthew had a discussion about what was going on. She said that on the phone Amy kept saying something was illegal. When she called back, Paulette answered and said, "Don't worry about it, just come in tomorrow." Matthew and Mary discussed it that night, but they weren't sure what was illegal and they didn't understand what was going on. They didn't have a fight b/c it takes 2 people to fight. He was upset, but that was something that had been going on for a little while. It wasn't anything new. She encouraged him to please go in to the bank and talk about it. He said he would, but he had been saying that for weeks.  Mary says they got Pizza Hut that night and watched "Chicken Little," and then the girls went to bed. Matthew put on a movie (some kind of mob movie) and she fell asleep. They eventually went to bed and had relations that night that were "ordinary for us."

10:22:50 - Mary says the first time she ever saw Steve Farese was the first weekend she was in McNairy County Jail. And that Monday was the first time she ever saw Leslie Ballin. She was in the jail then, too. She had no money to hire an attorney at that time. She had no "small fortune," and she hadn't bee outsmarting the banks.


10:19:08 - Mary says Matthew pointed the shotgun at her to affirm he was in control. It was scary. Mary says if Allie was crying, he'd suffocate her to get her to get quiet and get to sleep. He'd pinch her nose and hold her nose. She couldn't stop him from doing it - she couldn't physically do anything. Mary said she wrote the checks in the family because Matthew told her to, but she didn't control the finances. Matthew had the only income in the family. Mary testifies that they had a budget, but they just got through day to day.  She says Matthew opened a large check one time with her name on it. They had entered several contests - Matthew told her to fill out stuff that came to the house and send it back in. Contests included the Publisher's contest, but there were numerous other ones - some for money, some for things like TVs and cars.

10:17:57 - Mary says she's never shot or loaded a shotgun, and she doesn't know how a pump shotgun works. Mary testifies that when she was out on bond, she tried to see her children.

10:15:30 - Farese asks her about the swollen jaw she had when she called Dr. Drew Eason. She says the jaw was swollen because she had been hit by Matthew, but she told Dr. Eason that she thought it could be a spider bite. Mary says Dr. Eason looked into her mouth and said everything was fine. Mary says that besides the threat of cutting the brake lines, Matthew also made threats with the shotgun many times - putting it in her face and holding it towards her. He said if she ever talked back to him the way his sister-in-law talked back to his brother, he'd cut her into pieces. At that time, one of his brothers was having marital problems.

10:03:26 - Defense attorney Steve Farese resumes his questioning of Mary Winkler. He has her look through some photographs, and she says they look familiar. Mary testifies she's seen those photographs - or ones similar to them - at the house. She says she would see Matthew at the computer at all hours of the day and night. Sometimes she would go check on him late at night if he hadn't come to bed yet, and when she came up, he'd click the screen blank. She doesn't know why.  Steve Farese shows her a picture of a pair of shoes that are the same as the shoe she has next to her, but they are black.

After a sidebar, Farese asks Mary to look through some more pages of photographs. Mary says those pictures are representative of those she saw on Matthew's home computer.

9:31:05 - Sidebar

9:23:44 - Steve Farese hands Mary a Wal-Mart sack with a shoe and a wig in it. It is a platform shoe - not the kind she would wear to church. The shoe & wig are both from Matthew. Mary testifies that she didn't need a shoe like that, but Matthew wanted her to wear it to dress up for sex. She'd also dress in very short skirts or "something slutty." Mary says she was sometimes asked to look at pornography on Matthew's computer. She thinks they were movies, but some might have been still images.  Mary testifies that she did not enjoy that sort of thing, and she'd always look at the back of the desk. After he'd ask her to look at the photos, they'd have sex. Mary says he'd ask her to engage in types of sex she thought were unnatural. It concerned her and hurt her. When she expressed her concern, he'd say "OK," but then he'd do it again. There were other things she didn't want to do, and it was supposed to be like the movies.

9:21:10 - Mary testifies that the children would either lose privileges or get spankings, and sometimes the spankings would get out of hand. Mary says if Patricia & Allie ever got in trouble and he was having a bad day, he would get some of it, too. They've stayed home from school at times b/c Matthew didn't want anyone to see the bruises on their legs.

9:17:12 - Mary testifies that Matthew pushed her down, used his belt, and kicked. But, up until the time she got to Selmer, he had never hit her in the face with his hands. Mary testifies that he did hit her in the face in Selmer. She doesn't know why. Mary can't remember back to why he was upset. She did what he told her to do and went where he wanted her to go. Once the girls started getting older, Matthew didn't want them around Mary's family. There was some talk of one of her brothers having a little bit of trouble, but they didn't know any facts. She doesn't know the reason he didn't want her around her sisters. Her dad and Matthew got along in the beginning, but over time Matthew couldn't stand him. Her dad was the one who gave Matthew a job when they were first married. Matthew didn't say why he couldn't stand her daddy, but she thinks they had different opinions and he just got on his nerves. Mary says Matthew was never wrong (in  his mentality) about anything....and never made any mistakes.  He would never admit he was wrong.

9:11:50 - Mary says she does not play softball, and she didn't play softball in McMinnville. But, she did get hit in the face by a softball. Mary testifies that she was in the catcher position, and she missed the ball and it hit her right cheek. It didn't hurt bad enough to go to the doctor, and she didn't go. Later that week, Matthew knocked something over. She bent down to pick it up, and he kicked her in the face on the same side where she got hit by the softball. She calls it "excruciating pain."  Mary testifies she never had an abcess tooth. On President's Day of 2005, she had unbearable pain, and she was pregnant. So, she called Dr. Drew Eason. But, she also called her dentist in Nashville and Mrs. Winkler took her and her 2 kids to Nashville to visit the dentist there. It was on her right side. She was 7 months pregnant.

9:08 - Steve Farese asks Mary if she remembers seeing Tim Parish on the stand yesterday. She says yes, and he came to be the preacher in McMinnville. But, Matthew's understanding when he moved to McMinnville was that when the current preacher resigned, Matthew would be the preacher. But, that didn't pan out. Matthew blamed Mr. Parish for that and got angry with him. When they were getting ready to move, Matthew went to talk to him so he wouldn't leave on a bad note. Then, someone came to talk to Matthew about it. So, Mary says Matthew told her to write an ugly note and mail it to Parish, and she did. The note said that she had a prescription for some kind of diarrhea medicine, and he should take it for his mouth. The note was anonymous.

9:04:30 - After Pegram, the Winklers moved to McMinnville for Matthew to be a youth minister at the Central Church of Christ. Mary says McMinnville (the town) was "wonderful." Her relationship in McMinnville was "very bad." Mary says she had asked Matthew to have a divorce, and he said that would not be allowed - it was not an option. Mary testifies that she wanted a divorce b/c it was so bad and she just "wanted out." She says he could "be so mean" in words & actions. Matthew would say she was fat, her hair wasn't right, and if something went wrong with the girls, it was her fault...and if it rained, it was her fault. Mary says she just didn't know when it was coming. She didn't know if she could relax and have a good day or if she had to watch every mood.

9:01:40 - On July 4, 1999 (while they were in the apartment in Nashville), they had Allie (Mary Alice). Patricia's mother's name is Mary, and Matthew's great-grandmother is named Alice. During these times, Matthew would be good, too. Mary says he was smart and talented and had a way with people. Mary says he could cause people to believe him. Mary testifies that Matthew's dream job would be a history teacher.

Allie was 5 weeks premature, and she had to be on a breathing machine for about a week.

8:56:04 - Mary testifies that their house was completed in September. Mary testifies that Pegram was a "hard place" in her life and home. Matthew's temperament escalated at that time, and he would "just be furious about certain things." She says he'd go from certain threats to more serious threats. Mary testifies that Matthew told her one time that he was going to cut the brake lines out of the van. She doesn't know why. Mary says he never got physical with her at Pegram. Mary testifies that one night Matthew got so upset about something, he was out of control. There were times she would look at him and he wasn't right. He had taken the recliner and thrown it down and turned it over, and she didn't know what to do. So, Mary snuck out of the house. The children were asleep in bed. Then, she called Matthew's brother Jacob and she went to her neighbor's house (Brandy Jones). Mary said she just laughed and made up some reason for Glenn Jones to come down there. She tried to play it off because she was ashamed and she didn't want them to know how Matthew was acting. Glenn came back with her to the house. Matthew & Glenn were college roommates and good friends. When they got to the house, Matthew gave the excuse that he had mixed medication, and Mary said it as well. She isn't sure if he was taking medication at that time. Mary testifies that Matthew acted differently when Glenn was there...he acted like he was "high" or "medicated." Before Glenn got there, he was acting like a "tyrant." She did still love Matthew then.

8:52:00-When they moved from Baton Rouge in June 1999, they came to Nashville, Tenn. Matthew was the youth minister at the Bellevue Church of Christ. Her mother died in April of that year (1999) of cancer. Mary testifies that their relationship was "good and bad" at that time. They were in Nashville for a few months in an apartment while their house was being built. Nothing unusual for them happened at that time. He yelled & screamed at her for reasons she doesn't know. Mary says "he would flail...he's a big guy...he was just all over." She testifies that Matthew would point at her with his fingers inches away from her nose and say things like "don't do it again." He would use the word "ugly" to her. If he didn't agree with something she did or said, he'd say that was just her "ugly coming out."

8:49:09 - they named their first child Patricia Diane - "Patricia" after her sister who died and "Diane" after Matthew's mother.

She says there were many times she "got hollered at" and "got onto." Mary testifies that one time Matthew thought she had done something with the shirts wrong and she thought it was her fault, but now she realizes they both had gained weight. It wasn't anything for her to be in trouble with. Patricia's elbow was dislocated, and she doesn't know what happened there.

Mary testifies that Matthew was with Patricia when her elbow was dislocated, and she was told they were playing when it happened. Patricia was between 9 months old and a year and a half when it happened.

8:43:59 - Mary testifies that she met Matthew at Freed-Hardeman, and they dated for three months before he proposed.

Mary testifies that when she was growing up, she considered her household to be a strict household. She says her mother and father wanted her to obey her elders, and her dad was the head of the household. They were members of the Church of Christ.

A month or two after they were married, he screamed and hollered at her. He wanted her to quit inviting brothers and sisters over and just be them.

She worked at the Piggly Wiggly, and she did not mind working.

Matthew got his degree in either Biblical Studies or "something about the Bible" according to Mary. Then he got a job as a youth minister in Baton Rouge. Patricia was born in Henderson, and she went with them to Baton Rouge.

8:39:50 - Steve Farese asks her to talk about her sister, Patricia. Mary says they were the "best of friends" and they never got into one fight. Mary says Patricia was the biggest cheerleader for her family. They slept together - she'd put pillows between them when Patricia had to wear a metal brace so it wouldn't hurt Mary.

When Patricia died, she coped by praying, talking to her parents, and had family support. She did not have any counseling. Eventually, Mary's family took in other children. Her family didn't have much money, but her dad was a contractor and he built on another room and they got a mini van.

After graduating high school, Mary testifies she enrolled in David Lipscomb University. Her parents paid for school. She attended school there for 2 years and transferred to Freed-Hardeman University (in Henderson, Tenn.) because they had the degree that she wanted in special education.

8:35:48 - Defense attorney Steve Farese calls Mary Carol Freeman Winkler to the stand.  She talks about getting married to Matthew and the death of her sister Patricia (who was 2 years younger than her). Mary's marriage, the death of her sister, and the death of her mother all happened in the month of April (in different years). Mary talks about the different places she went to school.

2007 Headlines
4/19 Winkler Jury Deliberates
4/19 Possible Charges Against Mary Winkler
4/18 Defense Says Preacher Terrorized Winkler Family
4/17 Winkler Daughter Called To Witness Stand

4/14 Bank Employees Discuss Winkler Financial Problems
4/14 Jurors, Winkler Listen To Taped Interview
4/14 Angry Caller Prompts Increased Trial Security
4/13 Third Day For Jury Selection In Winkler Trial

4/11 Jury Seated In Mary Winkler Trial
4/11 Witness Lists Released In Winkler Trial
4/11 Jury Selection Begins In Winkler Trial
4/04 Mary Winkler Charged With Husband's Death

3/19 Mary Winkler Asks For Custody Of Children
3/28 Family Of Slain Minister Sues Mary Winkler
3/22 Selmer Braces For Winkler Murder Trial
Prosecutor Not Seeking Death For Winkler

2/23 Winkler Trial Date Set
Mary Winkler Appears In Court
Mary Winkler Spied Out And About On New Year's
Mary Winkler's Story Continues Through Glamour

2006 Headlines
12/18 Wife Of Slain Pastor Living Quiet Life In McMinnville
Mary Winkler's Bosses Give Her A Chance
Winkler's Sisters Speak Out
Top Stories Of 2006: Minister's Wife

9/27 Judge Lets Minister's Wife's Confession Stand
Preacher's Wife Asks For Statement To Be Thrown Out
Mary Winkler Released From Jail On Bond
Minister's Wife Expected to Post Bond Friday

9/18 Preacher's Wife Remains Behind Bars

04/19/2007 Winkler Defense Team As Jury Begins Deliberating
04/19/2007 Winkler Jury Begins Deliberations
04/18/2007 Analysis of Morning Session In Winkler Trial Day 6
04/16/2007 Winkler Daughter Called To Witness Stand
04/14/2007 Highlights From Day 3 In Mary Winkler Trial
04/14/2007 Angry Caller Prompts Increased Trial Security
Mary Winkler Spied Out And About On New Year's
12/29/2007 Year In Review: Wife Kills Minister Husband

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