HOUSTON COUNTY, Ga. — A 24-year-old man accused of stabbing his wife to death learned his fate earlier this month.
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Fifteen minutes. That is all the time it took for a Houston County jury to render a verdict in the case of Matthew Jamal Kendrick, 24.
Kendrick’s case transpired on January 22, 2022, after officials said he made a 911 call stating that he stabbed his wife, Shateria Watkins, 20.
The stabbing happened in the Creekwood Park parking lot in Perry, Ga. According to Perry Police, Kendrick claimed self-defense, saying that Watkins tried to run him over with his car.
During the investigation, the Perry Police Department retrieved a video from one of the park’s cameras, that reportedly showed Kendrick and Watkins inside Kendrick’s parked car.
Police said Kendrick got out of the parked car, forcefully pulled open a car door and stabbed his wife, Watkins nine times.
Watkins then drove away and to her house, according to authorities.
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Perry officers found Kendrick near the park and arrested him. Police said at the time, he had blood on his hands. Authorities were able to find the murder weapon a short distance from where Perry was arrested.
The police said the knife and the blood on Kendrick’s hand matched Watkins’s DNA.
Five months prior to the murder, police said, the couple had an incident when Kendrick discharged a gun during an argument.
Houston County authorities said the two were married for only 10 days before the fatal stabbing.
Watkins was a member of the ROTC at Perry High School and was dually enrolled at Central Georgia Technical College in the cosmetology program, according to a family-placed obituary. She graduated in 2020.
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The trial began on Aug. 7 and ended on Aug. 9. After about 15 minutes, the Houston County jury convicted Kendrick of malice murder.
Sentencing will be scheduled for a later date when the judge will determine whether Kendrick’s sentence will be life with or without a possibility of parole.
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