GLADSTONE, Mo. -- A Texas woman convicted of killing a Gladstone psychiatrist who was having an affair with her husband, was sentenced to 20 years in prison, with eligibility of parole after 14 years, Friday afternoon in Clay County Circuit Court.
Shannon O'Roark Griffin, 55, was convicted of first-degree murder and armed criminal action in the death of Dr. Irina Puscariu of Gladstone three years ago. Jarrett Johnson, Griffin's attorney says he's grateful for the judge’s ruling, because he says it could have been a lot worse.
“She was originally charged with first degree murder which only has two ranges of punishment; death or life without parole. We convinced the prosecutor to amend the charge, drop it to second degree murder, she could have gone to prison forever, she could have gone to trial been convicted of second degree murder, and a jury could have recommended far more time,” said Griffin's Attorney, Jarret Johnson.
Prosecutors say O’Roark Griffin drove from her home in Texas to Puscariu's home in Gladstone with the intent to kill her after O-Roark Griffin's husband allegedly refused to end the affair. Prosecutors say O’Roark Griffin and her husband, Air Force Col. Roscoe Griffin had just finished a therapy session where he told his wife he wanted a divorce.
Puscariu was shot three times. Puscariu’s elderly mother told police the doorbell rang around 2 p.m. on Friday, January 13, 2012, and a woman came into the house and shot Puscariu three times. She later identified O’Roark-Griffin in a photo line up. As O’Raork-Griffin drove away, she called her daughter and her husband to say she did what she had to do to protect him and others from this evil woman.
According to court records, Col. Griffin called police about the murder. He said he knew Puscariu was dead because his wife called to tell him she had killed his mistress.
Puscariu worked at the Kansas City-area V.A. Hospital.
In 2012, Puscariu’s ex-husband didn’t want to speak on camera but after the murder he told FOX 4 this is an “unspeakable loss and the biggest personal loss of his whole life.” He says “It has destroyed two families!” He also asked for respect for the families while they go through this tragedy.