Greenville Murderer Gets 30 Year Sentence

Greenville, MS- Washington County resident Wadarren Lawrence pled guilty to Second Degree Murder in Washington County Circuit Court, District Attorney W. Dewayne Richardson announced today.

Richardson said, “Wadarren Lawrence was set for trial on this week of court, but instead he pled guilty before Judge Margaret Carey-McCray on Monday.”  Wadarren Lawrence was indicted by the April 2016 Grand Jury.

Lawrence was sentence for the February 2015 killing of Jaylon Vaughn. In what can only be termed a senseless killing, the defendant and the victim had been attending a party when words were exchanged. Lawrence, then pulled out a firearm and shot and killed Vaughn, who was 17 years old at the time of his death.

Judge McCray sentenced Lawrence to the District Attorney’s recommendation of 30 years in the custody of Mississippi Department of Corrections with 25 of those years to serve for the offense of Second Degree Murder. The remaining 5 years will be served on Post-Release Supervision with the Mississippi Department of Corrections. Lawrence also received a seven year sentence with the Mississippi Department of Corrections for an unrelated charge that he pled guilty to at the same time.

Pursuant to Mississippi state law, defendants sentenced for Second Degree Murder must serve every day of their sentence and are not eligible for early release. This case was investigated by the Greenville Police Department; the District Attorney’s office appreciates their hard work in helping to remove another violent criminal from the streets of Greenville and Washington County.

Contact: W. Dewayne Richardson
District Attorney, Fourth Circuit Court District | 662-378-2105

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Our Mission

The mission of the District Attorney’s Office for the Fourth Circuit Court, under the direction of
W. Dewayne Richardson, is to seek justice in order to maintain an environment of safety, security and lawful behavior for the citizens of the Fourth District.

The Office of the District Attorney uses lawful and reasonable methods to successfully identify and prosecute those who commit felony crimes. When a crime occurs, the Office of the District Attorney diligently pursues the indictment and conviction of those responsible, while adhering to all rights of the Victim, ensuring the victim is being provided all direct services applicable, and acknowledging all constitutional safeguards for the accused.

The District Attorney’s Office for the Fourth
District’s goal is to work with law enforcement and the judiciary to punish those who break our laws with adequate punishment. Every representative of the Office of the District Attorney pledges their commitment and full support to the protection of all citizens within the Fourth Circuit Court District.

Contact

Greenville Office
P.O. Box 426
Greenville MS 38702
[P] 662.378.2105
[F] 662.332.4665
generalinfo@msdeltada.com

Indianola Office
P.O. Box 1046
Indianola, MS 38751
[P] 662.887.4306
[F] 662.887.6275
generalinfo@msdeltada.com

Greenwood Office
P.O. Box 253
Greenwood, MS 38935
[P] 662.453.1089
[F] 662.451.7291
generalinfo@msdeltada.com

Judicial Process

Citizen's Involvement in the criminal justice system typically begins with them being a victim, witness, or defendant of a crime. Arrests are made generally by a judge-issued warrant or by a police officer observing a crime in process. Law enforcement may also arrest someone if it has probable cause to believe the person committed a criminal offense. When individuals are arrested they are routinely advised of their Miranda Rights upon arrest, advising them that they have the right to remain silent and that anything they say will be used against them in court. On being questioned, defendants have the right to have their attorney present or to have one appointed if they are indigent.

Felony defendants appear at a first appearance and have the charges reviewed. A judge will inquire if the defendant has an attorney. If low income, the defendant may qualify for a court-appointed lawyer. No plea is entered at this time unless the defendant wishes to plead guilty or waives indictment and has an attorney present. All felony cases are presented to a grand jury in the county that the crime was committed. In the State of Mississippi, only a grand jury has the authority to indict an individual for a felony offense and require them to stand trial for the charges alleged in an affidavit and indictment.

If an indictment is issued, the defendant is bound over to stand trial or enter a guilty plea to the crimes alleged. When a criminal trial occurs all 12 jurors must find the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Sentences are decided by Circuit Court Judges in all criminal matters. In most cases a recommendation is made regarding imprisonment, probation, fines and restitution.