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HomeCity and State Gov'tJURY FINDS PRESCOTT WOMAN GUILTY OF FIRST DEGREE MURDER 

JURY FINDS PRESCOTT WOMAN GUILTY OF FIRST DEGREE MURDER 

JURY FINDS PRESCOTT WOMAN GUILTY OF FIRST DEGREE MURDER 

On October 26, 2022, Sharalyn Stura, age 61, was found guilty by a Yavapai County jury of First Degree Murder, Tampering with Physical Evidence, and False Reporting. The trial began on October 18, 2022, in Division 4 of the Yavapai County Superior Court. 

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The murder came to light on June 21, 2018, when two motorists discovered Stura tied with a dog leash to the steering wheel of her vehicle which was partially blocking traffic near I-17 and Highway 179. At the time, Stura claimed she had been kidnapped from her residence in Prescott and forced to drive her car with the kidnapper in the passenger seat. She said the kidnapper needed to stop and use the bathroom. She further claimed that before getting out of her car, her kidnapper had tied her hands to the steering wheel and that, upon his exit from the car, she drove away. The Arizona Department of Public Safety transported Stura to the Verde Valley Medical Center.

Meanwhile, officers with the Prescott Police Department and other agencies responded to Stura’s residence in Prescott where Stura’s boyfriend was discovered deceased in his bed with a single bullet wound to his head. At the same time, a large-scale manhunt from the alleged kidnapper was underway. The manhunt involved the use of SWAT teams from multiple agencies, search dogs,  volunteers, and a helicopter. 

Prescott Police Department detectives eventually confronted Stura with inconsistencies in her story and the evidence. A short time later, she confessed to killing the victim while he was sleeping and to discarding the gun and other evidence at the Prescott Gateway Mall. She also confessed to driving herself to the location on I-17 where she was found and to tying herself to the steering wheel.  

Stura will be sentenced on December 12, 2022, at 1:30 PM before the Honorable Krista Carman of the Yavapai County Superior Court. She faces a natural life sentence in the Arizona State Prison. 

Sheila Polk, Yavapai County Attorney, thanked the jury for their service, the investigative team, and the prosecution team for their hard work on the case.  

Criminal Division Civil Division Bad Check Program (928) 771-3344 (928) 771-3338 (928) 771-3490 

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