Dewayne RichardsonMississippi Delta DA 4th District

Greenville, MS—Akeem Singleton, 27 yoa, of Hollandale, pled guilty to Second Degree Murder on Monday for killing Courtney “Corey” Williams, District Attorney Dewayne Richardson announced today.

In the middle of the night on or about January 11, 2016, emergency dispatch called for all units to report to the 700 block of Rosenwald Street in Hollandale, Mississippi regarding a shot victim lying unresponsive in a residence. Upon arrival, officers of the Hollandale Police Department “HPD” observed a Black male, later identified as Courtney “Corey” Williams, lying on the floor in a bedroom, where he had succumbed to a single gunshot wound to his head. Officers searched the bedroom for a firearm and shell casings but found none.

Law enforcement officers later learned that the firearm was removed from the home before their arrival and returned to search further. One of the family members led the officers to a nearby apartment complex where a .380 caliber firearm was found under an air conditioning unit. In the bedroom across the hall from where Courtney was found, officers located a .380 magazine, .380 caliber projectile, and .380 shell casing stuffed in a pile of clothes. This bedroom belonged to Akeem Singleton.

Each of the detained family members were tested for gunshot residue, and the Mississippi Crime Lab confirmed gunshot residue on Akeem Singleton’s hands.

During the pathological exam of Courtney’s body, Dr. Mark LeVaughn determined that Courtney’s cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head and ruled the manner of death as a homicide, opining that Courtney died as a result of a single distant type gunshot wound to the left side of the head. Dr. LeVaughn removed the bullet from the wound track, and it was compared to the firearm recovered from the apartment complex. The Mississippi Crime Lab determined that the bullet matched the class characteristics of a .380 caliber firearm.

After nearly eight (8) years of exploring any possible defenses to Capital Murder and continuing the trial, Akeem Singleton pled guilty to the lesser-included offense of Second Degree Murder. He was sentenced to a term of twenty-eight (28) years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections, with a mandatory twenty-three (23) year term of imprisonment, and five (5) years of supervised probation.

Members of Courtney’s family faced Akeem Singleton during his sentencing hearing and harped on the trauma they have and continue to endure because of his fatal actions. Courtney was twenty-seven (27) at the time of his death and father of nine (9) children.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Laura K. Cooper and Kaylon McCou. ADA Cooper relayed, “I know that this will not bring Courtney back home to his family and children, but I hope this conviction brings a sense of closure to them and comfort knowing that Courtney did not suffer. We appreciate the family’s patience and look forward to hearing great news about Courtney’s children in the future.”

The Office of the District Attorney appreciates the swift response, collaboration and investigation of the Hollandale Police Department and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office. With the support of the Mississippi Crime Lab and State Examiner’s Office, we were able to identify Courtney’s killer and hold him accountable.