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Gilbert woman sentenced to life in prison in hammer-killing case

PHOENIX — A Gilbert, Ariz. woman was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for the 2009 murder of her husband.

The jury sentenced Marissa Devault, 36, after about three days of deliberation. Formal sentencing is set for June 6.

Devault was found guilty of murdering her husband, Dale Harrell, on April 8. Prosecutors say Devault killed Harrell while he slept in a failed bid to collect on a life insurance policy to repay more than $300,000 in loans from her boyfriend.

Devault says she killed Harrell in self-defense and claims he had physically and sexually abused her in the past.

Harrell died nearly a month after the attack.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.