Webster to spend up to 22 years in prison for wife’s death

By: Kevin Bunch | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published March 19, 2015

 An emotional Evelyn Marks, mother of Christina Lazzana-Webster, awaits the announcement of Anthony Webster’s sentence March 19 in Macomb County Circuit Court in Mount Clemens.

An emotional Evelyn Marks, mother of Christina Lazzana-Webster, awaits the announcement of Anthony Webster’s sentence March 19 in Macomb County Circuit Court in Mount Clemens.

Photo by Deb Jacques

Anthony Webster, an Eastpointe man accused of killing his wife, Christina Lazzana-Webster, was sentenced in Macomb County Circuit Court March 19 to 12-20 years in prison on a second-degree murder charge, with another two years for a felony firearm charge.

Webster received credit for 51 days served on the first charge and 730 days for the second.

Webster and the court reached a sentencing agreement March 11 wherein Webster would take responsibility for the murder charge and avoid taking the case to trial. Webster did not attend the sentencing; his attorney, Tim Barkovic, issued a letter from his client that stated that he knew he had the option to attend and make a statement, but he did not feel there was anything else to add to the agreement.

“He knows what it’s going to be and accepts that sentence,” Barkovic said. “My client articulated reasons why he doesn’t want to be here. I don’t wish to disclose on the record (why), but his choice was freely and voluntarily made.”

Prior to the sentencing, Lazzana-Webster’s mother, son and best friend each came before the judge to talk about how her killing has affected their lives.

Evelyn Marks, Lazzana-Webster’s mother, said that her life and the lives of her two grandchildren have been “forever changed.”

“I pray to you that you will consider giving him the maximum sentence,” Marks said to Judge Peter Maceroni.

William Pearl, Lazzana-Webster’s son, now 19 and a student at Michigan State University, was a high school student when his mother was killed. He said he “fell to pieces” after her death.

“I lost a lot — me and my sister,” he said. “There’s no words I can stand and say in front of you that will bring her back — nothing that can make this right.”

Kimyana Reece, who was Lazzana-Webster’s close friend and business partner, said she considered Lazzana-Webster a sister and echoed Marks’ request for the maximum sentence.

Maceroni said the court did not want to minimize the family’s suffering, but had to consider the legal issues that the lengthy case involved. Therefore, he agreed to uphold the sentencing agreement, or Cobbs Agreement, with Webster, who pleaded no contest to the charges.

Marks said after the sentence was announced that the sentence “is what it is” and that she and her family would be there if Webster came up for parole hearings at any point before serving the maximum amount of time.

Reece said she planned to reopen the business that Lazzana-Webster used to run in Eastpointe, known as Big Top Popcorn, with a new name to honor its former owner: Chris’s Gourmet Popcorn. She hopes that it would benefit Lazzana-Webster’s children to have the business going again.

Lazzana-Webster was found shot in the chest at the couple’s home Jan. 26, 2013. A police search reportedly found that 17 guns registered to Webster and Lazzana-Webster’s Lexus were missing after the shooting. One loaded handgun was found in the driveway.

The Lexus was found four days later in Detroit, blocks from Webster’s parents’ home. Cellphone records suggested that Webster’s phone had pinged off cell towers near his home four times the day of the killing — at 3:11 p.m., 3:33 p.m., 9:28 p.m. and 10:16 p.m. — while police estimated that the killing occurred around 7:30 p.m.

Reece said following the sentencing that the couple was estranged and in the process of separation when the shooting occurred.