Woman guilty of murder in shooting, burning of ex-boyfriend near Lawrence

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LAWRENCE, Kan. — A woman has been convicted of killing her ex-boyfriend whose body was found inside a burning home near Lawrence.

The Lawrence Journal-World reports that jurors deliberated 1½ hours Friday and Monday before finding 39-year-old Tria Evans guilty of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder, arson and aggravated burglary in the November 2017 killing of 34-year-old Joel Wales. Evans and Wales had a child together and a history of domestic disputes. Prosecutors say text messages show that she plotted his death with a friend for more than a month. One text between the women reads: “This needs done this week.”

A murder charge is pending against the friend, 38-year-old Christina Towell. She is accused of driving Evans to the scene.

Sentencing for Evans is set for March 19.

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