Prosecutors Claim Stark Executed Husband

Published On: Sep 19 2011 03:16:04 PM PDT   Updated On: Mar 04 2009 07:32:48 AM PST

SPOKANE - Shellye Stark, the Spokane woman charged with 1st Degree Murder for killing her husband Dale got underway with opening arguments Wednesday with opening arguments.

Prosecutors say Shellye Stark pre-planned and then shot her husband Dale to death in 2007. While prosecutors presented their case to the jury Wednesday afternoon the defense team deferred, choosing to wait to present their case.

Deputy Prosecutor Larry Haskell told the jury Stark flew to Spokane and executed her husband.

"Ladies and gentlemen Dale Robert Stark is dead and he shouldn't be," Haskell told the jury Wednesday.

Haskell Stark as a cold-blooded killer who shot her estranged husband Dale three times in the back to cash in on his house, car and $400,000 life insurance policy.

"She killed him with premeditation in a pre-planned, pre-arraigned scheme to ambush him and execute him in his own home," Haskell said.

Stark's defense team is expected to argue she was a battered woman and Dale had abused her for years, even forcing her into prostitution to pay his gambling debts.

Her attorneys say she was afraid for her life and was defending herself when she shot and killed Dale Stark in his kitchen

"Shellye Stark left California, she came to Spokane, she armed herself, she fixed [the] crime scene and she waited and drew him in, kicked out the witnesses and executed Dale Robert Stark," Haskell said.

Prosecutors are expected to call Dale Stark's mother and crime scene experts to the witness stand Thursday. Stark's trial is expected to last approximately two weeks.