MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A man was convicted in the 2017 murder of his wife whose decomposing body was found in the trunk of her car by a towing company after the vehicle was repossessed.
The body of Anitra Jones-Summerville, 42, was found April 10, 2017 at the lot of a Horn Lake, Mississippi towing company.
Her husband Melvin Summerville, 43, was found guilty Friday of first-degree murder after less than an hour of jury deliberation, the Shelby County District Attorney’s office said. He was sentenced to life in prison.
The company had towed her repossessed vehicle that morning from the 3500 block of Crow Road in North Memphis to the lot in Horn Lake.
Jones-Summerville’s body was found as workers were taking inventory. Her cause of death was determined to be multiple gunshot wounds.
Neighbors on Crow at the time told WREG they’d noticed a gray Chevy Malibu parked on the street for several days before police came to their door asking questions about it.
Summerville had a history of assaulting his wife, according to court testimony. In April of 2017 her family reported her missing, prosecutors said.
“Detectives determined that her husband was the last person to see her alive, and that he had told a friend he killed her and how he killed her. Also, phone records showed Summerville returned to the crime scene within 24 hours,” the district attorney’s office said in a release.