Local News

Daughter Testifies Against Mother In Army Stepfather's Death

Posted August 26, 2005

— The daughter of a Fayetteville woman on trial for killing her Army husband took the stand Tuesday to testify against her mother.

Army Maj. David Shannon was shot to death in 2002. Investigators say his wife, Joan Shannon planned her husband's death and convinced her teenage daughter, Elizabeth Shannon, to shoot him.

Elizabeth Shannon told jurors that her mother first tried to poison Maj. Shannon and when that did not work, she gave the teen a gun and asked her to commit the crime.

When Joan Shannon's lawyer, Paul Herzog, cross-examined the girl, he attacked her past in an attempt to challenge her credibility. He suggested Elizabeth Shannon was linked to gangs and suggested that Maj. Shannon's death was gang-related, not family-related.

Elizabeth Shannon was tried in 2004 where she admitted to killing her stepfather.

"She put the gun to the man who has raised here since she was four years old, pulled the trigger, and when he didn't die quickly enough, she put it to his chest and pulled it again," Brenda Strong, the victim's sister, told WRAL in 2004.

Since Elizabeth Shannon pleaded guilty and is now testifying against her mother, she will face less prison time -- a maximum of 31 years.

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