Woman convicted of murdering Navy doctor-husband sentenced to 16 years to life
SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A woman who stabbed her Navy doctor-husband three
months after learning he was having an affair was sentenced Friday to 16 years
to life in state prison.
Jennifer Trayers, 43, was convicted last month of second-degree murder
in the death of Dr. Frederick Trayers.
Deputy District Attorney Fiona Khalil said the 41-year-old victim was
unhappy in his marriage but was committed to his wife of 18 years.
“She elected selfishly to end his life,” the prosecutor said, noting
the defendant stabbed her husband 11 times. “She had so many other choices.”
Judge Joan Weber said she was hard-pressed to find a case that
exemplified the “irrevocable tragedy of domestic violence.”
“You made a decision that changed everything,” the judge told the
Defense attorney Kerry Armstrong said he was heartbroken that because of
California's inflexible laws, Trayers would serve a similar life sentence to
that of a gang member who killed someone.
Armstrong said Trayers was “extremely remorseful” for killing her spouse.
In her closing argument, Khalil said Trayers lied when she told the jury
how she killed her spouse the morning of Dec. 4, 2010.
Trayers testified that she was frustrated by her husband's refusal to
speak to her about his affair when she went into the bedroom with a butcher
knife and asked him how to kill herself. She said she and her husband struggled
over a sharper military knife that he pulled out, and she stabbed him in the
back of the neck.
The defendant said her husband stood up and pulled the covers off the
bed, then she blacked out and couldn't remember stabbing him 10 more times,
including two lethal stab wounds to the chest.
Khalil said the evidence didn't support the defendant's story and that,
in fact, she attacked her husband in bed after he had taken sleep medication.
Armstrong said his client stabbed her husband while in a “total
Trayers found herself on an “emotional roller coaster” because her
husband told her he would never leave her but at the same time was telling his
younger mistress that he loved her and wanted a divorce.
The defendant installed spyware on her husband's computer and
intercepted hundreds of emails between him and his girlfriend discussing how
they wanted to get married and have children, Armstrong said.
Trayers sent an eight-page email to her husband's mistress the morning
of the murder, telling the woman “My husband is NOT going to be yours” and
“I was the last person he was with.”