The family of an Alabama murder victim is desperately trying to get back her wedding ring—which was auctioned off by the state and sold to a man who refuses to sell it back. “She was murdered by the streets and robbed by the state,” said Phillip Stanton, husband of Shemethia Coteat Stanton, who was shot to death in an ambush outside her Hoover home in 2000. AL.com reports that the ring was labeled unclaimed property by the coroner’s office and sold in a $1,700 lot of items to Harold Blaker of Missouri. Stanton offered to buy the ring for $2,000.
“I bought it fair and square,” Blaker told the news site, explaining he was worried about getting “screwed” on the deal. But even as AL.com offered to drive the money to him, Blaker said he would not sell it. “I bought it and paid for it,’’ Blaker said. “I’m not obligated to him at all. I’m sorry that he got involved in a murder thing, but that’s beyond my control.