Texas woman on death row to instead get life term

November 2, 2011 - 2:55 PM

HOUSTON (AP) — One of 10 condemned women in Texas is getting off death row after an appeals court agreed prosecutors improperly withheld evidence at her original sentencing hearing.

Chelsea Richardson was convicted of masterminding the slayings of her boyfriend's parents so her boyfriend could inherit their $1.56 million estate. She was 19 at the time of the December 2003 killings.

The now 27-year-old's attorneys asked the appeals court for a new punishment hearing because prosecutors withheld a psychologist's notes suggesting another woman, who took a plea deal in the case, masterminded the plot.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals sent the case back to Tarrant County prosecutors, who agreed Wednesday that Richardson should be resentenced to life in prison.

Richardson's boyfriend and the other woman also are serving life prison terms.