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Son Says Pastor Hired Him To Kill Wife

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It's a twisted tale of murder and a mistress that pits father against son.

This week, a Harris County jury is hearing the seedy side of a longtime Houston pastor.


Tracy Burleson, pastor of the First New Mount Calvary Baptist Church, is accused of masterminding the murder of his wife a year ago.

His son and the mistress they're accused of sharing are also charged in the death of Pauletta Burleson.


"He's a slum bucket, oh Lord," said Joyce Bingham, the victim's sister.

"He pretended to love God, but he's the devil," said Sharon Fuller, the mother of Burleson's son who's also charged.

"He wasn't right in the first place, I'll just put it that way," said Fannie Aaron, the victim's other sister.

== Raised in ‘Hell’ ==

The son, William Fuller, is the admitted triggerman allegedly hired by his own father to kill Paulette Burleson.

On Tuesday, Fuller testified against his dad.

When the pastor's son took the stand, he told a horrific tale of being raised in what he called "hell" by a father who he says hired him to kill his step mom.

"This is one of the most bizarre and heinous crimes. How can a parent involve their child?" Fuller's mother Sharon asked.

The 21-year-old Fuller testified his father had been asking him to kill his stepmother for nearly two years. Fuller says his dad and Palmer talked extensively about the plot to kill Pauletta.

In May 2010, Fuller says he finally gave in after his dad agreed to give him $2,000 of Mrs. Burleson's $100,000 life insurance policy.

"This man has always let Satan come into his life. There's been no time he's lived the right life. I don’t know how he can call himself a minister," Aaron said.

Defense attorneys argue Fuller framed his father to win the affection of Tyonne Palmer. They say Fuller wanted Palmer all to himself because she was dating both men.

== A Church in Crisis ==

Burleson was the pastor of a church that mysteriously burned down a week before his wife's death.

The congregation at the First New Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Fifth Ward called Burleson pastor for decades.

It was a church in crisis. Membership had declined to just a few dozen people.

Those who stuck around filed suit to try to get Pastor Burleson removed. They alleged in the suit that the pastor's wife caught him inside the church having sex with a choir member.

"He was always having sex, and she caught him in the church having sex," said Aaron.

The state now calls the minister a murderer, and his own son says his father is a fraud who stole his disability check for 11 years.

== ‘I Still Hate Her’ ==

Fuller also told how his father and murdered step mom would severely beat him.

At the time Fuller says he put the gun to Mrs. Burleson's head and pulled the trigger, she was on probation for beating him. Court papers allege Tracy and Pauletta Burleson beat Fuller with an iron, an extension cord and a shovel.


The pastor hasn't shown emotion as he sits in court accused of committing the ultimate sin.

"I hate him. I know God don't want me to feel like that but I'm only human. He took my sister away from us," Bingham said.


"I think he's pure evil. If there's a devil, he's one in human form," Sharon said.

She says losing custody of her son William to Tracy Burleson 11 years ago was the toughest thing she's had to endure until now.

She says she lost her house and didn't have the money to fight the custody battle. She says she lost the custody fight because Burleson was a pastor and she is a lesbian .

Prosecutors are expected to call witnesses for the next two days in the minister’s murder trial. Burleson's mistress and son are still awaiting their day in court.

When asked how he felt about his dad, William Fuller answered, "He's my father. I love the dude."

As for how he feels about Pauletta Burleson, William Fuller said on the witness stand, "I still hate her."

>> UPDATE: Audio Tapes Reveal Ugly Side of Pastor to Parishioners


FOX 26 Reporter Damali Keith contributed to this report

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