Tonya Ford’s story will be broadcast nationwide this weekend.An episode of “Snapped,” a crime documentary television show that airs on the Oxygen network, featuring Ford will air Sunday at 9 p.m. EST.A preview for the episode debuted on Sunday and will continue to play throughout the week. The episode will also air several times over the next few weeks.Ford, 39, was accused of shooting and killing her husband, Lebanon Police Officer David Ford, on Feb. 10, 2009. She pleaded not guilty in November 2010.Ford’s trial began Aug. 20 in Taylor Circuit Court. After hearing nearly a week’s worth of opening and closing statements and from several witnesses, jurors spent about 12 hours deliberating and then declared Ford guilty. After deliberating for about five minutes, jurors recommended that she spend 20 years in prison for her crime, which she is now serving.Ford has maintained her innocence and an appeal is pending in her case at the Kentucky Supreme Court. Since murder is a violent crime, Ford will serve 85 percent of her prison sentence, about 17 years, before being eligible for parole. The episode about Ford will feature interviews with prosecutors, investigators, police officers, friends and family members. Ford was not interviewed.Sharon Martin, supervising producer of “Snapped” and narrator of the show, said the Ford case was chosen for an episode because of the nature of the allegations.“We saw it as a case that would interest our viewers,” Martin said. “She was a scorned wife accused of killing her husband who had left her for another woman. The investigation into her alibi and the long journey to bring her to trial made it a strong episode.”Each episode of “Snapped” episode profiles the case of a woman who has been accused of a violent crime.“Snapped is a documentary show detailing the cases of women accused of murder. The show explores the woman’s life, the crime she’s accused of and the aftermath. With interviews from the key players in each case, each episode asks the questions, Did she do it? And if so, why? For viewers, it’s a glimpse into what drives an ordinary woman to commit a crime,” Martin said.Officer Ford, 40, was found shot to death in the head at his Graham Road home in Campbellsville.Ford called the Campbellsville/Taylor County E-911 Center and said she arrived at home and found that her husband had been shot.Taylor County Coroner Terry Dabney said in 2009 that an autopsy confirmed Officer Ford’s death as a homicide.A year and a half after Officer Ford’s death, on Oct. 19, 2010, a Taylor County grand jury convened in special session to hear from 17 witnesses and then issued an indictment charging Ford with murder. She was arrested the following day.She was released from the Taylor County Detention Center on Nov. 9, 2010, after family members posted a $30,000 cash bond. She remained free on bond until her conviction.Mindy Yarberry, a former field producer for Jupiter Entertainment, the company that produces “Snapped,” filmed Ford’s trial for inclusion in her episode.Following the trial, Yarberry and two other Jupiter Entertainment crew members, Paul Foster, director of photography, and Christopher Gurney, location sound technician, spent several days in Campbellsville. The three did several interviews and filmed several locations in Campbellsville and surrounding towns.After filming was complete, Martin said, Jupiter Entertainment’s post-production team combined interviews with trial footage and other materials to create the episode.
By Calen McKinneyCentral Kentucky News-Journal