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A still of Butch Halley (Image via Cinemaholic)

Did Sunny Gunn-Halley succeed in killing Butch Halley? Details explored

The upcoming re-airing of Investigation Discovery's Love, Honor, Betray will look at the case of Butch Halley, who was nearly murdered by his newlywed wife in exchange for his large insurance payout. This case, which dates back to 2009, was a red flag in the idyllic setting of Parkersburg, West Virginia, where Butch had lived for a long time until his wife attempted to murder him.

Butch had a long marriage previously, and after a divorce, he finally met Sunny Gunn-Halley, a waitress at the time, with whom he started dating. Though it all seemed good at first, Sunny Gunn-Halley's substantial criminal history soon crept up from her past, and she started plotting her husband's murder.


But when Sunny Gunn-Halley tried to use a family friend as a hitman for the job by offering him $10,000, the friend reached out to the police and set up an undercover operation, which successfully foiled Sunny Gunn-Halley's plan.

Though she never managed to get her husband killed, she was arrested and charged with solicitation to commit a felony crime of violence. She pleaded guilty and was sentenced to prison for 3–15 years.

The upcoming re-airing of Investigation Discovery's Love, Honor, Betray will cover this in more detail when it airs on December 2, 2023, at 7 p.m. EST.


Why did Sunny Gunn-Halley try to kill her husband?

Butch and Sunny (Image via Oxygen)

While there seems to be no solid reason why Sunny decided to murder Butch Halley, it could be attributed to martial discord and Sunny's previous history of criminal activities and greed for money.

Sunny had a criminal record before the couple's relationship. She had previously been detained for bad checks, domestic violence, and smuggling 500 grams or more of cocaine at the Miami airport. She told Butch Halley everything about her past, but he chose to give her another chance.

But she soon went back to her drug-hustling ways as she started selling Percocet and other prescription drugs out of their home in Parkersburg, as per Butch Halley, who spoke to Oxygen later.


Within a year of their marriage, things did not look very bright for the couple anymore, and they even began sleeping in separate rooms. This is when Sunny Gunn-Halley decided to kill her husband for his insurance money, which was a hefty sum of $130,000. Sunny was also the sole beneficiary of the policy.

How was Sunny Gunn-Halley caught?

Sunny Gunn-Halley reached out to a family friend, Franklin Robinson, with an offer. She asked him to act as a Hitman for her in exchange for $10,000. Robinson spun this around well by saying that he had a friend who was just released from prison and could help out in this case. Instead, he reached out to the police and informed them of this.

The police sent an undercover officer posing as Robinson's uncle. The officer finally saw this in person and caught Sunny in action. In October 2009, Sunny was arrested and accused of solicitation to commit a felony crime of violence.


Butch Halley denied Sunny's involvement in his murder plot until the point of her arrest. She pleaded guilty to solicitation to commit a felony crime of violence at trial and was sentenced to three to 15 years in prison.

Where is Butch Halley now?

Butch Halley (Image via Cinemaholic)

Following the arrest and the trial, Butch Halley filed for divorce and a restraining order. He has since continued to live in Parkersburg and now spends his days spending quality time with his family and grandchildren

Sunny reportedly married again after being released from prison and now resides in Kentucky.


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Edited by
Krutik Jain
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