Wake man pleads guilty to killing wife
Posted June 28, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — A Wake County man pleaded guilty Friday to killing his wife last year and driving to Virginia with her body in his pickup.
Sonny Howard, 43, of 14925 Creedmoor Road, was sentenced to a minimum of 13 years in prison after pleading guilty to second-degree murder in the May 23, 2012, death of Sherry Howard.
Neighbors who went to check on Sherry Howard, 50, because she had been panicky the previous night told a 911 dispatcher that they found Sonny Howard covered in blood and what appeared to be a body behind the couple's home. Sonny Howard told them he had been "sawing a hog," the neighbors said.
Wake County deputies found the home deserted when they arrived, so authorities used Sonny Howard's cellphone calls to track him to Galax, Va. Police there pulled his truck over and found Sherry Howard's body in the bed of his pickup truck.
"I'm truly sorry about this, more than anybody. I only hope that one day you all can find peace and forgiveness. I'm sorry," Sonny Howard told relatives in court Friday.
His defense attorney said Howard never denied killing his wife in an argument and agreed to plead guilty to avoid putting his teenage son through the ordeal of a trial.
Lee Howard said he has forgiven his father and wants to spend more time with him.
"I love my mom more than anything in this world. Ain't nothing going to bring her back, but that don't change how much I love my daddy," he said.
Assistant Wake County District Attorney Melanie Shekita said Lee Howard's statement was moving.
"No one in the courtroom could keep a dry eye," Shekita said.