A former Alabama Pastor identified as Richard Shahan has been accused of stabbing his wife to death so that he could leave the country to marry his boyfriend.
Karen Shahan, wife of the accused was found stabbed to death July 23, 2013 inside the family’s Birmingham home. Richard Shahan had told investigators that he was out of town visiting one of their two sons when his wife was killed. He wasn’t charged in the case until January 1 when he was arrested at a Nashville, Tenn. airport while trying to board a plane to Germany. He reportedly resigned from the church he oversaw just a day before his arrest.
According to report the 53-year-old pastor had planned to leave the country and never return. Information gotten from his mail indicate that he intended traveling to Kazakhstan via Germany and ultimately planned to reside in the United Kingdom.
Deputy Jefferson County District Attorney Leigh Gwathney told the court that, "He planned to become a citizen there and begin a new life with his boyfriend who he intended to marry. He had no intention of ever returning to the United States. He had no home to return to and he had said his goodbyes to his family."
However, Shahan's lawyers say prosecutors are trying to “manufacture a murder case” and that the pastor’s planned travels were part of a three-year trip with a Bible mission group.
The former pastor’s bond was set at $100,000.
A preliminary hearing in the case is scheduled for Feb. 5.