The Benton County woman who gunned down her husband while he slept pleaded guilty to murder on Monday and was sentenced to 40 years in prison.
Susan Fleck reached the plea deal with prosecutors in which she pleaded guilty to first degree murder in exchange for the sentence. She may be eligible for release from prison in 28 years, according to the Benton County Prosecutor’s Office.
Fleck initially faced a charge of capital murder, but the prosecutor charged her with first-degree murder because prosecutors did not believe they could prove the statutes necessary for a guilty verdict in a capital murder case. Prosecutors stated early in the case they would not seek the death penalty, according to the Benton County Prosecutor’s Office.
Fleck was arrested in March 2013 in connection with her husband Evan’s shooting death. Benton County investigators released an arrest report that month that states Fleck shot her husband after finding a picture on his iPad of him embracing another woman.
Benton County Circuit Judge Robin Green, the judge overseeing the case, denied bond for Fleck.
Evan Fleck was found dead with a gunshot wound to the right side of his cheek in his bed in the master bedroom of the family’s home east of Gentry on March 3, according to a probable cause affidavit filed in Benton County Circuit Court.
Susan Fleck drove to Delaware County and called a Benton County dispatcher to report what had happened, court documents show. Fleck told a dispatcher her husband was in the bedroom and had recently filed for divorce. She said she destroyed her life, according to the court documents.
The Fleck’s four children, ages 7 to 15, were home at the time of the shooting, officials said.
Fleck woke one of the children at 3:40 a.m. and said “something bad happened,” according to court documents. She told the four children to stay out of their father’s room, court records show.
A Delaware County booking report states Fleck was taken into custody at Twisters, a convenience store in Kansas, Okla., and booked into the Delaware County Detention Center in Jay, Okla., at about 7 a.m.
Investigators responding to the residence at 19147 Arkansas Highway 12 east of Gentry found Evan Fleck dead in the bedroom with what appeared to be a single gunshot wound to the head, Benton County Sheriff Kelley Cradduck said.
Cradduck said Fleck was shot with a handgun, which authorities later recovered.
Investigators said the couple had been arguing before the shooting. Deputies searching the home found an iPad referenced by Fleck in her call to police. Photographs showed Evan Fleck embracing another woman, the affidavit states.
A detective confirmed Evan Fleck had engaged in an affair with the woman and that Susan Fleck knew about it, the woman in the picture told an investigator.
Evan Fleck filed for divorce from Susan Fleck on Feb. 19, according to records in the Benton County Circuit Clerk’s office.
He was employed at VeriFone in Bentonville, according to his Facebook page.
After the incident, the children first were placed in the custody of the state Department of Human Services, but since have been placed with relatives, officials said.