Jury Convicts Valliant Man Of Killing Wife 11 Years Ago - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Jury Convicts Valliant Man Of Killing Wife 11 Years Ago

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IDABEL, OK -- A McCurtain County jury has convicted a man whose wife disappeared a decade ago.

The husband told Valliant police back on February 26, 2002, that his 25-year-old wife had been missing since February 21. Now, on a Wednesday afternoon more than ten years later, a jury of seven men and five women has decided that he killed her.

Waiting for the verdict, family and friends of Jerry Meek said they didn't believe he killed his wife. "I don't think the boy done anything," says stepmom Paulette Meek.

"Has this been difficult for you to watch him go though this?" KTEN asked. "Sure, because his future's up for grabs," says dad Terry Meek.

Jerry Meek, 40, of Valliant, heard the guilty verdict and recommended sentence of life with parole on the eighth day of trial, after having testified on Monday.

"He just talked about his life with Hope, how it was," says Paulette Meek. "The good, bad, and the ugly. ...We weren't allowed to have much time with the kids or to be around them, she didn't approve of them visiting his family."

"We didn't get to come around there. She wouldn't let the Christians hang around," says Terry Meek, regarding visits to their Valliant home.

According to court documents, investigators interviewed one of the couple's children, who told them that her mother and father had been fighting, and that she believed the fight ended when her mother became quiet.

The child went on to state that she and her brother had to help their dad cut some carpet in the bedroom, documents state. They went a lot of places including fishing and camping, and Jerry Meek allegedly dumped the carpet near Hochatown.

On Feb. 21, 2002, Jerry was absent from work, and was caught on surveillance tape around 1 p.m. buying two fifty-gallon totes from the Hugo Wal-Mart, investigators stated. He'd just withdrawn $1,000 in cash from his bank account in Valliant.    

The day before on Feb. 20, Hope had allegedly called Jerry's work -- the Valliant paper mill -- accusing him of having had an affair with a co-worker. Investigators say she told her brother in one of her last recorded calls that she was looking for his mistress.

Hope Meek's body was never found. After five hours of deliberation, the jury delivered a guilty verdict which was read around 5:30 p.m.

"It's been a long two weeks," says Paulette Meek. Jerry Meek's dad says Hope's Wiccan beliefs conflicted with theirs and that was one reason they couldn't visit. One of Hope's relatives from Florida testified earlier in the trial but her family was not there on Wednesday, Jerry's family said.

Formal sentencing is set for December 11.