A South Carolina woman entered a guilty plea to a charge of attempted murder after trying to beat a 64-year-old relative to death with a hammer. The victim’s 65th birthday passed during the two-month stint in the hospital, where the elderly woman fought for her life during the official dawning of her golden years, authorities say.
Amy Lynn Wright, 36, will now spend 25 years in prison as part of a plea deal with prosecutors from the 11th Circuit Solicitor’s Office. The victim meanwhile is back home, but “not the same person” she was before the attack according to family members. Those remarks were made by the family at Wright’s sentencing hearing according to a news release provided by the Solicitor’s Office to Law&Crime. The family also noted that the victim “was independent before this happened and …the glue that held the family together.” That same woman now “needs assistance with everything,” the family told the judge.
The name of the victim, who is related to Wright by marriage, has not been made public.
The attack happened on Aug. 18, 2020, when officers with the City of Cayce Police Department were called to the victim’s home. The incident report submitted to the court detailed the grim scene inside the home:
Upon arrival, law enforcement and first responders discovered the victim, who was sixty-four (64) years old at the time, sitting on a couch covered in blood with multiple contusions and lacerations on her head, face, and hand. Law enforcement also observed pools of blood on the ground near the couch and a hammer. The victim was transported to the hospital in critical condition.
The victim had been unarmed and alone at the time of the attack state prosecutors, who noted in court filings that the woman would have likely passed away from her injuries were it not for her granddaughter. The young woman went to check on the victim when she heard her calling for help, arriving just in time to discover Wright rushing out the front door as her grandmother sat covered in blood, her skull crushed.
The Solicitor’s Office stated that the victim then began a long road to recovery that continues to this day.
Following the attack, the victim was in the hospital for nearly two months. The victim was placed on life support and her chances of survival were low due to the multiple skull fractures, brain bleed, and swelling of the brain. The victim had little brain activity and one of her eyes had to be sewn shut due to the amount of orbital socket damage. The victim underwent multiple brain surgeries and her right index finger was amputated. The victim fortunately survived, however, her way of life will never be the same.
The incident report notes that investigators soon learned that “Wright had been living at the residence for approximately two weeks along with her two small children.” The victim had welcomed her into the home “because Wright did not have anywhere else to go.”
That report also offered up a possible motive for the attack, with officers noting after to speaking to family members that the victim “expressed concerns about Wright’s excessive drinking and the children,” which angered Wright.
Wright eventually turned herself in to authorities and confessed to beating the victim with a hammer. Investigators later shared some of the information from that initial interview in a court filing, which read in part:
Wright admitted to attacking the victim with a hammer, but could not recall how many times she struck the victim. Wright indicated that she did not like how the victim spoke to her children. Wright was later interviewed again by another agency and admitted to harming the victim because the victim “kept telling her children not to touch things and not to run around in the home.” When Wright was asked how her children are disciplined, Wright explained that her children are spoiled and they get whatever they want. She again reiterated that she was “tired of the victim telling her children not to touch things.”
The investigating officer told the judge at the sentencing hearing that this lack of remorse from Wright has been a constant since the start of the investigation. He also described the horror of seeing fresh indents from the hammer on the victim’s skull when he arrived on the scene back in August of 2020.
This was not Wright’s first brush with the law: Prosecutors noted she had been charged with assault and battery with intent to kill, possession of marijuana, DUI, and child endangerment in the past.
Wright’s inmate record shows that she is now serving her time at the Camille Griffin Graham Correctional Institution, an all-female facility just outside the South Carolina’s capital, Colombia. And it is there she will remain until 2047 because there is no chance of early release or parole due to the nature of her offense. The Code of Laws in South Carolina classifies attempted murder as a violent and serious felony, stating:
A person who, with intent to kill, attempts to kill another person with malice aforethought, either expressed or implied, commits the offense of attempted murder. A person who violates this section is guilty of a felony, and, upon conviction, must be imprisoned for not more than thirty years. A sentence imposed pursuant to this section may not be suspended nor may probation be granted.
Wright still claimed to be living at the victim’s house in court filings.
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