Tex McIver case: Murder conviction overturned for once-prominent Atlanta lawyer who shot and killed woman in SUV

Georgia’s Supreme Court delivered a murder conviction for a once-prominent Atlanta attorney who shot his wife while they were driving an SUV, and said the jury should have had the opportunity to charge involuntary manslaughter.

Claud “Tex” McIver, 79, was convicted of felony murder, aggravated assault, influencing a witness and possession of a firearm while committing a felony in the September 2016 murder of his wife, 64-year-old Diane McIver. He was sentenced in 2018 to life in prison for murder, five years for influencing a witness, and a five-year suspended sentence for gun possession.

The Georgia Supreme Court reversed his convictions for murder and possession of a gun while committing a felony, but upheld his conviction for influencing a witness.

“We conclude that the court erred in denying McIver’s request to charge a lower-degree involuntary manslaughter charge because the charge was legal and some evidence supported giving the charge,” it wrote. chairman Michael Boggs in the unanimous opinion.

That means McIver is entitled to a new trial for the quashed charges.

McIver attorneys Don Samuel and Amanda Clark Palmer said they were “elated” by the ruling.

“He was denied a fair trial because the jury was not given a chance to determine that the shooting was wholly the result of negligence, as opposed to intentional murder,” they said in an emailed statement. “He was entitled to a fair trial and was not given a fair trial. We look forward to showing the next jury that he is not guilty of murder.”


Tex McIver describes the moment he shot his wife for the police

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McIver has about two months left to serve on the witness tampering charge, although the state probation commission may decide to release him earlier, Clark Palmer wrote in an email. She said they plan to file bail and ask that he be released immediately.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis “will evaluate the case and make a decision on how to proceed in the near future,” spokesman Jeff DiSantis said in an email. McIver was charged and tried under Willis’ predecessor.

At his trial in the spring of 2018, no one disputed that McIver shot his wife. The question for the judges was whether they thought he was planning it. Prosecutors alleged that he killed his wife because he coveted her money. Defense attorneys refuted that, saying McIver loved his wife dearly and that her death was a tragic accident.

The jurors at his trial acquitted McIver of willful murder but found him guilty of felony murder. Misdemeanor murder means that a murder occurs while committing another crime, in this case aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. That means the jury found he intentionally shot his wife, which led to her death.

The McIvers were rich and well connected. He was a partner at a leading labor and employment law firm and was a member of the state election council. She was president of US Enterprises Inc., the parent company of Corey Airport Services, where she had worked for 43 years.

Dani Jo Carter, a close friend of Diane McIver’s, was driving the couple’s Ford Expedition on the evening of September 25, 2016, as the three returned from a weekend at McIvers’ horse ranch, about 75 miles east of Atlanta. Diane McIver was in the front passenger seat and Tex McIver was in the back seat behind his wife.

With heavy traffic on the highway, Carter left downtown Atlanta. McIver said, “Girls, I wish you hadn’t done this. This is a really bad place,” and asked his wife to take his gun from the center console and give it to him. A short time later, McIver fired the gun once, hitting his wife in the back. Carter drove to a hospital where Diane McIver died.


Atlanta Reporter Recounts the Night of Diane McIver’s Death

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