Atlanta attorney who killed his wife could soon be released from prison
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Atlanta attorney who killed his wife could soon be released from prison

<div>Tex McIver appears in a Fulton County courtroom in Oct.  2022 to ask for bond.</div>
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Tex McIver appears in a Fulton County courtroom in Oct. 2022 to ask for bonds.

(FOX 5)

ATLANTAClaud “Tex” McIver, the once-prominent Atlanta attorney who fatally shot his wife in 2016 as they rode in an SUV, may soon be released from prison after taking a plea deal.

McIver, 81, has been convicted of felony murder and sentenced to life in prison in 2018 but that conviction was overturned in 2022 by Georgia’s highest court, which ruled that the jury should have the option of a misdemeanor involuntary manslaughter charge.

On. Jan. 26, McIver also pleaded guilty to lesser charges of involuntary manslaughter, conduct and possession of a gun during the commission of a crime. He will receive credit for the time he’s already spent in custody.

McIver apologized for the shooting of his wife, saying that she has never stopped wearing her wedding ring.

“I want it to be very, very clear, Diane is the best friend I ever had,” McIver said during the hearing. “She won my heart quickly. She’s again, was the best friend, best partner I could ever imagine. I will always, always love her in that regard. She died as a result of my actions, plain and simple. I stood up to that over and over again. I can’t remember a day where I didn’t cry for the first two years.”

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney said he thought the plea deal was “a healthier and cleaner way” to resolve the case rather than a retrial, which could have resulted in a not guilty verdict.

He acknowledged that some of those who loved Diane McIver, 64, may be disappointed in how the case ended.

“Mr. McIver shouldn’t have had that loaded gun in his hand with his finger on the trigger,” the judge said. “For those who seek purely punishment through this process, you’re going to be disappointed.”

The former attorney’s prison sentence ends in mid-2025, but McIver’s attorney, Don Samuel, told CNN he could be released on parole at any time if the parole board approves the move.

If released, McIver will remain on probation at his home with a curfew and ankle monitor.

Death of Diane McIver

On the night of Sept. 25, 2016, Dani Jo Carter, a close friend of Diane McIver, was driving the couple’s Ford Expedition as the three returned from a weekend at the McIvers’ horse farm about 75 miles east of Atlanta. Diane McIver was in the front passenger seat and Tex McIver was in the back seat behind his wife.

With heavy traffic on the interstate, Carter took an exit into downtown Atlanta. McIver said, “Girls, I wish you hadn’t done this. This is a really bad area,” and asked his wife to get his gun from the center console and hand it to him. A short while later, McIver fired the gun once, striking his wife in the back. Carter drove to a hospital where Diane McIver died.

Rich, successful and politically connected, the McIvers were considered an Atlanta power couple.

McIver was a partner at a national labor and employment law firm. Georgia’s high court accepted the surrender of McIver’s law license in April. He has been an attorney in Georgia since 1973.

Diane McIver had risen to the top of US Enterprises Inc., after more than four decades with the real estate and advertising business founded by Billy Corey.

Corey was in court Friday to present a statement, which was read aloud on his behalf by an employee from the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office. In his statement, Corey said Diane McIver was an integral part of his business and that her death left a large void. He said her death “was no accident.”

“One man, one hand and one bullet ended his life and caused a lifetime of misery and loss for so many others,” Corey said. “There will never be another Diane McIver. Diane was full of life and she should never have been taken away from us in such a careless and malicious way. She is today missed as much as she was on that tragic day.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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