Prominent Atlanta attorney Claud “Tex” McIver was indicted on murder charges on Thursday after authorities accused him of intentionally killing his wife.
Fulton County prosecutors successfully argued that McIver purposely shot his business executive wife, Diane McIver, inside an SUV in September 2016. Tex McIver was riding in the rear seat while his wife rode in the front passenger seat when the shooting occurred. Tex McIver claimed that the gun, a .38-caliber snub-nose revolver, went off by accident, but a Fulton County grand jury didn’t buy it. The evidence presented was enough for the jury to indict him on malice murder, felony murder, three counts of influencing witnesses, and other related charges.
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Prosecutors said that McIver’s behavior after his wife’s death was a major factor in adding on the additional charges. For instance, McIver reportedly told the person who drove the SUV when the incident happened, Patricia “Dani Jo” Carter, to say she wasn’t there. Carter was one Diane McIver’s close friends. A few weeks later, in October, Tex McIver called Carter’s husband, Thomas Carter, and told him to tell his wife to stop communicating about the incident with law enforcement.
Tex McIver is also accused of asking a family friend, Charles William Crane, to retract a Black Lives matter statement he told the media. Previously, Tex McIver allegedly instructed Crane to act as his spokesperson and tell the public the gun was pulled out during a Black Lives Matters movement, but later changed his mind about the statement.
Prosecutors argued that the motive for the murder was Diane McIver’s money. She was the president of U.S. Enterprises Inc. and reportedly had a secret will that she drafted up shortly before she was killed. Further, it’s alleged that Tex McIver owed his wife $350,000.
Prominent Atlanta defense attorney, Renee Rockwell, said one of McIver’s biggest mistakes was talking to investigators. She also touched on motive. So far, there is no clear motive, aside from money, which, according to Rockwell, is no motive at all since they were married.
“You never tell any kind of story to investigators at all. What happens is you end up painting yourself into a corner….What makes no sense is the state’s motive. The jurors in Fulton County are not going to appreciate some motive that he killed his wife because he owed her $350,000. How can owe your bride $350,000?”
Crane told police that Patricia Carter pulled off of the Interstate in Putnam County, Georgia, because they were afraid of Black Lives Matters protesters in the area. Supposedly, McIver pulled a gun from the middle console in the SUV to protect himself from the protesters, and the pistol accidentally shot off and hit his wife. Later, the suspect said that the story wasn’t true and that he actually pulled the gun out because he was afraid of homeless people in the area, but he dozed off in the back seat, and the gun went off.
Another reason for the upgraded charges was evidence found in Tex McIver’s home. In December, McIver was arrested and charged with involuntary manslaughter and misdemeanor reckless conduct He was out on bond when he got arrested again on Wednesday after police found a gun hidden in his sock drawer, which violated his bond conditions.
Tex McIver’s attorneys indicated that McIver had his own money and had no want or need to kill his wife for her cash. Regardless, a Fulton County judge ordered McIver to stay behind bars with no bond.
[Feature Photo: Handout/Fulton County PD]