The Free Lance-Star, VA
By ELLEN BILTZ
Jan 11, 2005
Donna Lee Blanton, wife of Virginia State Police First Sergeant Taylor V. Blanton, was arrested and charged with his murder and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony... Taylor Blanton was shot four times with his own gun in his bedroom...
May 1, 2005
[VA] Trooper Blanton's wife to stand trial for his death
...Suspicion shifted to Donna Blanton in the days after the Oct. 16, 2003, death of her husband. Still, she attended his funeral alongside his other relatives and scores of law-enforcement officers... Donna Blanton told authorities she was in the bathroom when she heard gunshots. She reported that the intruder dropped a gun belonging to her husband and that she then picked up the weapon and fired at the fleeing suspect... Investigators allege that Donna Blanton, before the shooting, had hidden a .380-caliber handgun belonging to her husband in a towel in a linen closet off the master bedroom. A forensic examiner testified that an impression left in the towel matched the shape of the gun...
...Ms. Blanton began sobbing when the verdict was announced, and audience members sitting behind the defense table also began crying. On the other side of the courtroom, hugs were exchanged... Taylor Blanton's mother, Betty Wade, who lived on a family farm across the street from her son and Donna, his second wife, said she was happy with the verdict, but called it a "no-win situation." "We feel for Donna's family's sadness, the sadness they have to go through."
[VA] Trooper's wife, Donna Blanton, gets 28 years for murder
Choking back sobs as she proclaimed, "I didn't kill my husband," Donna L. Blanton nevertheless received a 28-year prison sentence yesterday for fatally shooting her spouse in October 2003... Blanton broke her silence yesterday, telling the judge that during her trial, "I sat here and I listened and I watched everything that went on," as well as following all the media accounts, she sobbed as she clutched a tissue in her right hand. The courtroom gallery -- consisting mostly of family members -- listened intently as she spoke, while some sniffed back tears. "I have kept quiet and not said anything over the past 21 months. It's just time," she said, her voice trailing off. "I don't even know where to start. I'll start kind of at the beginning"... Blanton, 40, said, "I thank God for every minute we had together." Then she said, "One day," before stopping, pausing and saying, "That's all I have to say. Thank you for listening"...