Montgomery woman gets 8 years in husband's death

MOREHEAD — Pam Bartley of Montgomery County was sentenced Tuesday to eight years in prison for the 2007 shooting death of her husband, Carl Bartley.

A Rowan Circuit Court jury in December found Pam Bartley, 58, guilty of second-degree manslaughter. She will be eligible for parole in 19 months.

Special Judge Janet Coleman said she had considered sentencing Pam Bartley to a lesser sentence but decided to go with the jury's recommendation of eight years.

To do otherwise, Coleman said, "would unduly depreciate" the crime.

Carl Bartley, a used-car dealer, was found shot in the head in the garage of the couple's Jeffersonville home. The trial was moved from Mount Sterling to Morehead because a jury could not be seated to try the case in July.

Coleman noted that she got a packet of 24 letters from friends and relatives of Pam Bartley that sought leniency.

"The investigation centered on my sister, so I don't believe we will ever find out who the real killer was," wrote Craig Shepherd, brother to Pam Bartley, in one letter to the judge.

Defense attorney Grover Carrington asked Coleman to set an appeal bond pending an appeal of the conviction.

Carrington noted that Pam Bartley's bond before the verdict was $100,000. His motion noted that Pam Bartley had lived in Montgomery County for 45 years and that she had never failed to appear in court for any proceeding.

Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Cynthia Gale Rose opposed an appeal bond but said that if one is to be set, it should be $1 million in cash.

Coleman read into the record an account of an incident in the late 1970s in which Pam Bartley shot Carl Bartley in the back. The two had been in the process of divorcing but later reconciled. The jury at the December trial did not hear testimony about that incident.

Coleman set the appeal bond at $1 million in cash. It's not anticipated that Pam Bartley will be able to make that bond, Commonwealth's Attorney Keen Johnson said.