Jury Finds Pulliam Guilty of Manslaughter

Greenville, MS- After three hours of deliberations, a Washington County Jury found Greenville resident, Quavares Pulliam, 25 yoa, guilty of Manslaughter for the October 20, 2016 killing of Dwight Thedford, 31 yoa, District Attorney W. Dewayne Richardson announced today.

During the trial of this case, Assistant District Attorneys Kaylon A. McCou and John Herzog, Jr., presented to the jury evidence that in the early morning hours on October 20, 2016, Pulliam shot and killed Thedford at the intersection of Union Street and Dr. Martin Luther King Boulevard. Pulliam was in his vehicle parked at the red light on Union when Thedford walked by and a verbal altercation ensued. Moments later Pulliam claimed that Thedford spit on him, which is when he drew his firearm and shot Dwight Thedford before fleeing the scene. Although this shooting occurred directly in front of Delta Regional Medical Center, Thedford was not able to survive his injury. Dwight Thedford was shot one time in the head and was pronounced dead minutes later.

Quavares Pulliam was arrested that night in Leland, MS by the Greenville Police Department, with the assistance of the Leland Police Department, after a thorough investigation. During questioning, Pulliam admitted to shooting Thedford but claimed he was acting in self-defense. Pulliam also admitted to Greenville Investigators that he discarded the clothes he wore and the gun used in the killing. Greenville Police charged Pulliam with First Degree Murder for his crime.

Late yesterday afternoon, after three hours of deliberations, a Washington County jury found Pulliam guilty of the lessor included offense of Manslaughter for killing Dwight Thedford. The trial in this case lasted two days and ADA’s McCou and Herzog presented a number of witnesses to explain the events that led to Thedford’s death.

After the jury’s verdict was read in open court, Quavares Pulliam decided to commit one more crime in Washington County. As the jury exited the courtroom, Pulliam bolted out of the door and a foot chase ensued. After approximately a 6 block pursuit, Pulliam was captured near Strange Park by multiple agencies working together. The Washington County Sheriff’s Department, the Greenville Police Department, and the District Attorney’s Office were all on scene to place Quavares Pulliam back in custody without incident. Pulliam was then taken to the Washington County Regional Correctional Facility to await sentencing.

The case was heard by Senior Circuit Court Judge Ashley Hines. Judge Hines has scheduled Pulliam to be sentenced on February 25, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. After the Manslaughter conviction, Pulliam faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections. Pulliam has also been charged with Felony Escape for fleeing the courtroom after his conviction.

Officers and Investigators with the Greenville Police Department handled the case with efficiency and attention to detail, which ultimately resulted in Pulliam’s conviction. The District Attorney’s Office commends the Washington County Sheriff’s Department, Leland Police Department, and the Greenville Police Department for their dedication in keeping our community safe by working together to make sure that all offenders who commit crimes are held accountable.

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

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resources

Attorney General

www.ago.state.ms.us

MDOC

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Federal Prisoners

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Sex Offender Registry

state.sor.dps.ms.gov

AG Victim Unit

www.ago.state.ms.us

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.