Dewayne RichardsonBreaking News, Mississippi Delta DA 4th District

Greenville, MS — In Washington County Circuit Court, Ellison Lafayette was sentenced by Judge Richard Smith to a total of twenty (20) years with the Mississippi Department of Corrections following an earlier guilty plea to the 2019 killing of a local Greenville man. Lafayette pled guilty on January 17, 2023. Evidence presented proved that Lafayette entered into Taylor’s home and following an argument struck the fifty-one (51) year old victim in the back of the head. Taylor sustained serious injuries and was transferred to the University of Mississippi Medical Center where he died.

Judge Richard Smith heard from both the victim’s and defendant’s families during a lengthy sentencing hearing. Lafayette took the stand on his own behalf and admitted to striking Taylor following a verbal argument with the significantly older and smaller victim. Lafayette categorized the strike as a “slap” and a “mistake”. However he admitted that he was the one that turned a verbal disagreement into a physical confrontation. The State told the Court that it had been prepared to show that the fatal blow was a punch to the back of the head while the victim was turned away and not looking and that it was no “mistake”. During testimony, Lafayette confessed to the Court that he was previously told to stay away from the location where the incident occurred.

Lafayette was sentenced to twenty (20) years with the Mississippi Department of Corrections. He will have to serve the first fifteen (15) years of that sentence in custody. The remaining five (5) years will be served on Post Release Supervision with the Mississippi Department of Corrections.

John Herzog Jr. prosecuted the case for the District Attorney’s Office. Herzog previously said “Lafayette finally took responsibility for his actions by pleading guilty to the charge of Manslaughter. His actions took a family member away from his loved ones on Thanksgiving, a day where families should be able to gather together in peace.” The District Attorney’s Office appreciates the hard work provided by the Greenville Police in investigating the case

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