The Horrifying Finds In NBA Star Lorenzen Wright's Autopsy

Throughout his professional career spanning some 13 seasons, the late NBA star Lorenzen Wright scored a grand total of 6,306 points (5,022 of which were rebounds), made 479 blocks, and stormed the basketball court alongside his teammates in no less than 792 games (via Land of Wright knew that greatness didn't come easily, but "easily" never seemed to be part of his formula for success at any point in time.

Even if you're not a basketball fan, you might recognize Lorenzen Wright's name. In the summer of 2010, the world was struck with the devastating news that the 34-year-old sports icon had been found dead in a wooded area near Memphis, Tennessee. Only a handful of clues were initially gathered from the scene of the tragedy, and it ended up taking years for investigators to uncover the truth, but Wright's cause of death was virtually undeniable off the bat: murder (via the New York Post). 

Lorenzen Wright was murdered in July of 2010

According to the New York Post, a 911 call was placed in the early hours of July 19, 2010, that came from Wright's cell phone. It was a brief but chilling call — the operator asked for more information from the frantic person on the other end of the line, then a slight scuffle ensued, followed by several gunshots (posted on YouTube). It would be another nine days before authorities would discover Wright's lifeless body in a mature state of decomposition near a golf course in Memphis, Tennessee, though his assailant(s) were nowhere to be found. 

On July 22, Wright's mother noted her son's absence and filed a missing person's report. Police reached out to the NBA star's ex-wife, Sherra Wright Robinson, for additional leads. Robinson told them that Lorenzen had left her house on the night of July 18 after an argument broke out between them and that he intended to meet some unsavory associates of his for a drug deal. He returned to the homestead for a brief time around 10:30 p.m. with a large amount of cash, but details became foggy after that. Tragically, Wright would never be seen alive again by anyone but his killers, one of whom turned out to be Sherra Wright Robinson (per the New York Daily News). 

Sherra Wright Robinson orchestrated Lorenzen's murder

The vigorous hunt for Wright's killers continued for years before the truth of the matter was exhumed. In 2017, police learned that Sherra Wright Robinson requested the help of Jimmie Martin (her cousin) and Billy Ray Turner (her lover) in murdering her ex-husband after they arrested her in December of that year. (Martin had also been informing police for a time and helped them locate the murder weapon.) Lorenzen Wright was lured into a wooded area by Sherra herself. It was there that she and Turner shot him to death and left his body surrounded by bullet casings, as A&E True Crime reports. 

All three of the conspirators stood trial for their involvement in his death. Billy Ray Turner was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison, while Jimmie Martin was given a reduced sentence after providing police with information that aided in the prosecution — investigators determined that he wasn't present when the NBA star was killed and he was officially deemed a co-conspirator in Wright's death (via A&E True Crime). 

Sherra Wright Robinson pleaded guilty to facilitation to commit attempted first-degree murder and received a 30-year prison sentence. She requested parole in 2022 and was denied. "I'm going to make sure she serves those 30 years," Wright's mother Marion told A&E True Crime. "Until she comes with her real truth and as long as the blood stays warm in my body, I will be there every time."

Lorenzen Wright's autopsy report

On November 10, 2010 — nearly four months after Lorenzen Wright was murdered — the chilling results of his autopsy report were released to the public. According to Action News 5, Wright's corpse had reached such an advanced state of decay, he weighed a mere 57 pounds when authorities found him — in less than two weeks' time, his body had shed nearly 200 pounds. Apparently, the Tennessee summer heat had greatly amplified the process of decomposition and his remains were mostly skeletal by then. 

A good portion of his face was missing after it sustained two of the five gunshot wounds to his body — the nasal and frontal bones were gone. His head had four skull fractures and his two lower front teeth were gone as well. Two other bullets entered his chest area, around his heart, while the last one pierced his forearm, as Action News 5 reports. Several severe bone fractures in his ribs and right shoulder were discovered as well. No traces of drugs or alcohol were found to have been in his system at the time of his death. He was still wearing a necklace and a watch. Wright's body was so badly damaged and decomposed, the coroner's office had to identify him via dental records.