By Ken Kalthoff, NBC 5
The wife of death-row inmate Eric Williams learns her fate Tuesday as an admitted accomplice in the 2013 Kaufman County prosecutor murders.
Speaking publicly for the first time since the couple’s arrest, Eric Williams’ sister said Monday her sister in-law deserves a death sentence, too.
Tera Williams Bellemare said she still struggles to believe her only sibling and older brother is a killer.
“If my brother did this, it is not something I condone. And he also had a partner. He did not do this alone,” Bellemare said.
Kim Williams testified Dec. 16 in the sentencing phase of Eric Williams’ capital murder trial. She said her husband pulled the trigger on prosecutor Mark Hasse, District Attorney Mike McLelland and Cynthia McLelland. But Kim Williams admitted she helped plan and commit the murders. The jury sentenced Eric Williams to death the next day.
“If you have two kids that get into something, they’re doing it together. You punish both of them the same way,” Bellemare said.
Kim Williams is expected to plead guilty Tuesday at a 9 a.m. hearing in Kaufman. Special Prosecutor Bill Wirskye and Kim Williams defense attorney Paul Johnson both confirmed a plea agreement has been reached, but they declined to discuss details before the hearing.
“It was an overwhelming feeling of outrage and astonishment in the courtroom when she was testifying,” said former Dallas County Prosecutor Brandon Birmingham.
Birmingham attended Eric Williams’ trial after resigning to accept his newly elected position as a State District Judge, effective Jan. 1.
Birmingham said the Kaufman murders sent a shock wave through all of the community of prosecutors and the evidence against Eric Williams was overwhelming.
“Everything in this case points to the fact that Kim Williams was not the shooter, Eric Williams was the shooter. But make no bones about it, she was an accomplice and could have been convicted of capital murder,” Birmingham said.
Birmingham said prosecutors commonly accept plea agreements to secure sentences for the party they consider most responsible in a case.
“In order to clean up the streets sometimes you’ve got to get down into the gutter,” Birmingham said.
If Kim Williams pleads guilty to murder instead of capital murder, she could receive a sentence of life in prison with parole possible in 30 years. A capital murder conviction includes options of execution or a sentence of life in prison without parole.