Opening arguments and the start of testimony are scheduled this morning in the trial of a Royse City woman accused of fatally shooting her husband, a University Park fire captain, in 2016.
A jury was chosen Monday in the 354th District Court in the capital murder trial of Chacey Tyler Poynter.
Poynter was originally indicted on a count of murder, but a Hunt County grand jury issued a capital murder indictment in April, alleging she and Michael Glen Garza killed Robert Louis Poynter III for the victim’s money.
Hunt County District Attorney Noble D. Walker Jr. has waived the death penalty as a potential punishment in the case. If convicted on the capital murder charge, Poynter faces life in prison without parole.
Walker said the higher level charge was sought after his office learned of additional evidence not previously submitted by law enforcement.
The capital murder indictment alleges that Chacey Poynter and Garza fatally shot Robert Poynter with a shotgun “for remuneration, namely: money and financial assets and benefits owned or controlled by the victim.”
Among the items of evidence subpoenaed by prosecutors are records from the University Park Fireman’s Relief Fund.
Following a two-week jury trial last July, Garza, of Quinlan, was found guilty of murder and sentenced to 99 years in prison. An appeal of his conviction is currently pending before the Fifth Court of Appeals in Dallas.
Prosecutors previously alleged that Chacey Poynter and Garza were involved in an affair and acted together in the murder on Sept. 9, 2016, in Royse City.
Royse City Police Department officers were dispatched at 10:45 p.m. that night to an area on FM 35 near Hunt County Road 2595 after receiving a 911 call about a woman in the road attempting to stop vehicles.
Officers spoke with Chacey Poynter, who allegedly told officers that her husband had been shot and was in a vehicle parked nearby along the county road. Officers placed her into their vehicle, went to investigate and found Robert Poynter in his vehicle, deceased, from a single shotgun blast to the head.
The next day, officers interviewed Chacey Poynter for some nine hours, later finding on her cell phone a link to a photo on Garza’s Facebook profile. That and the ensuing investigation of their connection resulted in Garza’s arrest two days later.
Defense counsel Scott Cornuaud filed a motion with the 354th District Court on April 15 that sought to suppress all verbal statements made by Chacey Poynter while she was in the custody of law enforcement officers.
District Judge Keli Aiken denied the motion on April 26.
Two of Garza’s friends told authorities that Garza offered them details of what he did before, during and after the murder.
Poynter, 32, remains in custody at the Hunt County Detention Center on a $500,000 bond.