Lee Ann Matanane (Cullman County Sheriff’s Office)
CULLMAN, Ala. – A Cullman County jury last Thursday found Lee Ann Matanane, 55, guilty of the attempted murder of her estranged husband Benito Matanane. She was also convicted of first-degree burglary for entering his house with a weapon and second-degree assault on Clara Mitchell, the woman she found with him. Matanane pleaded both not guilty and not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect, but the jury was not swayed to either version.
According to separate grand jury indictments and the original Cullman County Sheriff’s Office incident report, on March 10, 2018 Matanane parked down the road from her estranged husband’s home and approached dressed in black and armed with a pistol. Forcing her way into the house, she shot her estranged husband and struck Mitchell in the head with the pistol before the two were able to disarm her.
Attempted murder and first-degree burglary (which includes burglary with a deadly weapon or injury to a victim) are Class A felonies which carry sentences from 10-99 years. Second-degree assault is a Class C felony which carries a sentence from 1-10 years.
Matanane has not yet been sentenced.
Cullman County Circuit Judge Gregory Nicholas, in issuing his verdict order, wrote, “After consideration of the guilty verdict that has been returned and the serious nature of the charges, the Defendant’s bond is revoked and it is ordered that the Defendant shall be held without bail pending sentencing.”
The Tribune reached out to the Cullman County District Attorney’s office for comment, but received no response.
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