Updated 2:46 p.m. | Barbara Sheehan, a Queens woman who killed her husband, a former police sergeant, in a hail of 11 bullets while he was shaving was found not guilty on Thursday of second-degree murder.
She was found guilty of a lesser gun charge. When the verdict was announced, Ms. Sheehan and her children burst into tears and her lawyer, Michael G. Dowd, put his arms around her and comforted her. Her supporters, adorned in purple in solidarity with victims of domestic violence, began cheering.
Ms. Sheehan, a school secretary, shot her husband, Raymond Sheehan, in their Howard Beach home in 2008.
During the nearly monthlong trial, the defense portrayed Ms. Sheehan as a battered wife who had defended herself against a sadistic tormenter after he pointed a gun at her head. But the prosecution described Ms. Sheehan as a pathological liar who executed her husband because she despised him, and then cloaked herself in a false narrative of chronic abuse to escape justice.
Acting State Supreme Court Justice Barry Kron said the verdict was contradictory, but did not elaborate on what that meant.