CAMBRIDGE — Nancy J. Tolley, 58, of Seaford, was sentenced to 10 years in prison with five years suspended for shooting her husband in a domestic dispute last year, after a plea deal was reached with the Dorchester County State’s Attorney’s Office.
The day before Tolley’s jury trial was set to begin, she entered an Alford plea. She has been found guilty of voluntary manslaughter while the charges of first- and second-degree murder, first-degree assault and the use of a firearm in a violent crime have been declared nolle prosequi.
An Alford plea allows someone to enter a guilty plea without technically admitting guilt.
Nancy Tolley was indicted in the case on Aug. 28, 2015.
The Maryland State Police Homicide Unit investigated the April 5, 2015 shooting of Eugene Tolley Jr. at his home on the 5700 block of Galestown-Reliance Road. An autopsy was done by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore. Homicide detectives were assisted by personnel from the state police Criminal Enforcement Division, Crime Scene Unit and Easton Barracks.
The couple was arguing in the home’s attached garage early that Easter Sunday morning when the dispute reportedly escalated into a physical assault, according to police. Nancy Tolley retrieved a gun and shot her husband as he approached her, police said.
Police said officers found the body of Eugene Tolley Jr. lying in the driveway near the garage. Police said the gun was found on the ground near the body. Nancy Tolley reportedly placed a 911 call saying her husband had been shot.
Court records show that Eugene W. Tolley Jr. was found guilty of second-degree assault in October 2008 against his previous wife at the same home where he was fatally shot Easter morning. He was acquitted of first-degree assault, reckless endangerment and false imprisonment charges.
In that case, Tolley Jr. was accused of beating his then wife “about the head, shoulder, arms and body,” breaking his then-wife’s hand on the steering wheel and putting a knife to her throat, according to a 2008 article in The Star Democrat. He was sentenced to nine years, six months in prison, with all but 28 days suspended, and five years probation.