Appeals Court upholds conviction of Teague woman in uncle’s murder

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
The conviction of a Teague woman in a capital murder case has been upheld by the 10th Court of Appeals, in Waco. The decision was issued on Sept. 13.
Attorneys for Amber Hope Halford, now 21, had filed appeals on four issues regarding the original conviction, which was decided at trial Oct. 25, 2016.
The incident for which Halford was convicted took place in March 2015. According to court records, Halford was in a relationship with J.D. Mulkey and thought she was pregnant with Mulkey’s child. On March 7, the two picked up Dustin Sanoja and discussed how to get some money. Halford drove Mulkey and Sanoja to the home of her uncle Douglas Hurst, who was out of town on his honeymoon. While Halford waited in the car, the two men broke into Hurst’s home and stole guns and computers. Halford and Mulkey sold the guns, except one, which he kept for himself. Halford testified at trial that she had intended to keep a laptop computer.
The next day, Halford and Mulkey discussed by text message returning to Hurst’s home to get more guns and the chargers for the computers. Since Halford was not sure if her uncle had returned from his trip, she told Mulkey to drive by his house and check for lights. Mulkey and another man broke into Hurst’s house a second time late the next night, March 8. Hurst, however, had returned to make sure his house was secure and was asleep inside. In the early morning hours of March 9, Hurst and Mulkey exchanged gunfire, injuring Hurst and killing Mulkey. Hurst was taken to a Waco hospital, where he died later from his injuries.

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