Laurie Martin was sentenced to 40 years in prison Wednesday for her role in the stabbing death of Chivas Piggee.
Martin, 37, was convicted of first-degree manslaughter on Aug. 11 in the 20th District Court after pleading not guilty. Prosecutors said she encouraged her 19-year-old daughter and two others to assault Chivas Piggee, 38, who died after being stabbed in November. The trio has already been sentenced and are serving prison terms.
The jury returned a guilty verdict against Martin, recommending 40 years in prison for orchestrating an attack that would ultimately prove fatal.
The defendant’s attorneys filed for a motion to dismiss, which was denied. They argued that since Martin is a registered member of the Choctaw Nation, and Carter County sits upon Chickasaw soil, the Carter County District Court lacked jurisdiction to hear a case involving a murder on Native American territory, and it would have to be escalated to a federal court.
Carter County District Court Judge Dennis Morris, who presided over the case, denied the motion primarily because it derived from the undecided case of Murphy v. Royal (2017), a Tenth Circuit case involving a man registered with Muscogee Nation who committed murder on Native American land.
“Despite the trial lasting a solid three days, they were extremely attentive and rendered a verdict and sentence supported by the law and evidence,” Ladd said. “From day one, the Piggee family longed for their day in court against Laurie Martin and that longing has now been satisfied.”
Several in Piggee’s family attended the hearing. Ladd called Patrick Piggee, Chivas’s younger brother, to the stand for a statement to Martin.
He recalled a phone call he received last year that would change his life forever.
“You may not be able to say that you are guilty, Laurie, but we all know that you are,” Patrick said. “The fact that you fail to take any responsibility for your actions has destroyed me, and has destroyed my family.
“I firmly believe, Laurie, that there is a special place in hell for people like you. You showed zero remorse.”
Martin is required to serve 85 percent of her sentence before being eligible for parole under Oklahoma law.