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Attorneys request suppression of evidence, change of venue in Lorenzen Wright murder case

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The two people accused of killing Memphis basketball star Lorenzen Wright were back in court Thursday to ask a judge to suppress certain evidence in the high-profile case.

The defense filed a motion to suppress the communications from a wiretap of Sherra Wright's phone, as well as a motion for notice of intent by the state to use evidence.

They also specifically asked a judge to bring in a jury from Davidson County to hear her case, claiming that it's clear from social media posts that she is disliked in the Bluff City.

"The comments are overwhelmingly negative. They are generally uninformed. They are generally hateful," Wright's attorney, Juni Ganguli, said.

"Memphis is unique. Lorenzen Wright was dearly loved by people here in Memphis. It is not only that our client is perceived to be hated here. It's also the fact the victim is loved by so many people here," Wright's attorney, Laurie Hall, said.

John Keith Perry, the attorney for Billy Turner, isn't requesting an outside jury.

"I don't necessarily see that, as it relates to Billy Turner, there should necessarily be a change of venue. But if there is, I am fine. We will try this case anywhere," Perry said.

Ganguli also mentioned that the defense is looking into a specific witness and what he knows or what investigation has been done on him.

"He was referenced by the Memphis Police Department in an affidavit to obtain the search warrant of Sherra's cell phone," he said.

The prosecution will give its response to the change of venue motion when both defendants return to court on February 8.

Before the court proceedings even began Thursday, Lorenzen Wright's mother Deborah Marion, who has been a constant figure seen throughout these proceedings, told WREG she would not be in court for the motion filing.

"I don't care where the jury comes from," she said. It is what it is. They killed my son. That's it."

Both Wright and Billy Ray Turner face first-degree murder charges for Lorenzen Wright's 2010 disappearance and murder. Turner also faces guns charges after investigators searched his home and found weapons inside.

The two were arrested in late 2017, more than seven years after Wright's body was found in the woods in southeast Memphis.

This is the first court appearance for Wright and Turner this year.

This comes after their trial was set for September 16.

Both Wright and Turner will be tried together.

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