Mississippi man sentenced to life for killing of friend


(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

BROOKHAVEN, Miss. (AP) — A Mississippi man has been sentenced to life in prison after a jury convicted him of murder in the 2018 shooting death of a man who was his friend.

Jesse Scott Smith was convicted Wednesday. Circuit Judge David Strong also ordered Smith to pay a $10,000 fine and $7,500 for funeral expenses. The body of 42-year-old John Ashley Bennett was found April 21, 2018, at his Brookhaven home by his mother.

Smith was charged with murder the next day. Bennett’s father, Leon Bennett Jr., said in 2018 that Smith was one of his son’s friends.

Smith’s trial was moved from Lincoln County to Walthall County.

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