TAMPA, Fla. — A jury found Christopher Hanney guilty Thursday of beating his wife with a hammer and setting her on fire. Hanney had claimed that she and another man attacked him.
Prosecutors said that Hanney and his wife, Audrey Mabrey, were in the process of divorcing in November of 1999 when he attacked her in their Apollo Beach house. They said he grabbed Mabrey, took her to the garage, beat her with a hammer, doused her with gasoline and then tossed a lit candle at her. She was set on fire.
With the help of a neighbor, she was able to extinguish the fire, but suffered burns to 80 percent of her body.
She has testified against her husband during the trial, held at the Hillsborough County Couthouse.
Hanney himself took the witness stand Wednesday.
He claimed that Mabrey and an unknown masked man attacked him. He said he accidentally hit Mabrey with a hammer while trying to fight back against the unknown man.
Hanney also claims he was tied up at gunpoint. He said he accidentally set his wife on fire while trying to escape the ties.
Hanney was found guilty of attempted murder, aggravated battery and arson.