• 64°

Watkins sentenced to 40 years in prison

NATCHEZ — Larry Watkins, 20, was sentenced Tuesday to serve 40 years in prison for manslaughter and aggravated assault.

Watkins pleaded guilty to the charges; he was originally indicted for murder and aggravated assault stemming from a July 2010 incident.

Watkins, 1400 Lafayette St., reportedly confessed to fatally shooting Benjamin Hargrave, 21, and wounding Curshala Pernell, 19, with a handgun July 31.

The incident occurred at 1:38 a.m., at 1401 Lafayette St.

Judge Forest “Al” Johnson delivered Watkins the maximum sentence, 20 years, on both the aggravated assault and manslaughter charges.

Both sentences are to run consecutively.

District Attorney Ronnie Harper said the prosecution decided to offer the charge of manslaughter rather than murder based on the facts and circumstances of the case.

Harper said the case presented a question whether Watkins shot the victims using premeditation, which would qualify as murder, or in the heat of passion, which qualifies as manslaughter.

“(Watkins) agreeing to admit guilt to manslaughter was a satisfactory resolution to the case,” Harper said.

During the investigation, Natchez Police Chief Mike Mullins said police believed the incident was the result of domestic disputes.

News

Pascagoula native 1st female official to work a Super Bowl

News

Analysis: Transition turmoil splits Mississippi delegation

COVID-19

Sunday update: State health department reports new COVID-19 cases, deaths

COVID-19

State health department reports new COVID-19 cases, deaths

News

Merit Health nurse remembered for selfless nature

News

Florida couple start fundraiser to secure, restore historic home here

News

Two men arrested for theft, damage at old International Paper

News

Legislative forum is Monday at Natchez Convention Center

News

Natchez projects awarded over $350,000 from MDAH grants

BREAKING NEWS

Sheriff’s office investigating shots fired in Adams County Wednesday night

BREAKING NEWS

Natchez police arrested teen in Wednesday night murder

News

More donate to Children’s Christmas Tree fund

News

Murder investigation of Natchez native now streaming on Discovery+

News

Harbor Freight Tools excited to be joining Natchez community

News

Supervisors approve contract for new engineering firm

COVID-19

State reports new COVID-19 cases, deaths

News

Adams County seeks study for new fire stations

News

Jackson State band to perform in Biden inauguration event

COVID-19

Bailey appointed interim tax collector until November special election

News

Supervisors reappoint Phillip West to Natchez school board

News

Harbor Freight showing job listings for new Natchez location

COVID-19

Coroner: Two more people died with COVID-19 Sunday at Merit Health Natchez

News

CPSO deputy finds his dog shot in his backyard

News

Missing teen found