Local News

Minister who killed wife out of prison

Posted December 15, 2009 2:10 p.m. EST
Updated December 15, 2009 2:36 p.m. EST

— A former Sanford pastor has been released from prison after serving more than five years for killing his wife.

Melvin Bynum, 47, pleaded guilty in January 2007 to voluntary manslaughter in the strangulation death of 40-year-old Marnita Bynum, his wife of 19 years.

Authorities found the body of Marnita Bynum, a substitute teacher, in the trunk of her Chrysler Sebring convertible, which had been abandoned on a rural road north of Hamlet on Aug. 2, 2004.

Melvin Bynum, the pastor of Cry Out Loud Ministries in Sanford, originally was charged with first-degree murder in the case and could have faced the death penalty if convicted on that charge.

He was held in the Richmond County Jail following his arrest in September 2004 and was moved to a state prison following his guilty plea to finish his 64- to 86-month sentence.