BLOUNTVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) — A man has been convicted in a 2017 murder that took place outside a Bristol, Tennessee Walmart.
Michael Strouth was convicted Thursday of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder, according to Assistant District Attorney Matt Darby.
Michael and Ashley Strouth were charged in the September 2017 fatal shooting of Michael Heatherly.
Heatherly’s mother, Tana Wheelock, said she is relieved to hear the verdict but that nothing can bring her son back.
“I cannot say I’m happy,” Wheelock said. “How could you when he’s destroyed not just my son, but himself, his family. He’s (Michael Strouth) destroyed so many lives. I’m relieved.”
Wheelock thanked the defense team that represented her son.
“I call them ‘Team Michael,’ to defend my son’s life that was taken and give us back some degree of justice,” Wheelock said. “They couldn’t give him back, but now maybe we can all start to heal.”
Wheelock wants people to know her son was a good father, son, and brother. She said he had a lot of humor that helped his family throughout the trial.
“That humor and faith in the justice system has got us through this and maybe other kinds of things will help my family,” Wheelock said. “I can’t make it better, but I can try.”
Ashley Strouth faces the same charges and is scheduled to go to trial in February.
A sentencing hearing for Michael Strouth has not been scheduled, but he faces up to life in prison, Darby said.