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Man Charged With Murder Of MSU Student

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(DeSoto County, MS)  Late Monday Mississippi State University announced Mason Perry Jones has been charged with capital murder for the shooting death of 21-year-old John Sanderson on the Mississippi State University Campus Saturday.

Jones was taken from the DeSoto County Jail Monday afternoon after his arrest Sunday night on a warrent for aggrivated robbery charges out of Hinds County, MS.

He spent the night in the DeSoto County jail after a search for him all over Mississippi.

Campus investigators at Mississippi State University reportedly identified him as a person of interest within hours of the murder.

“Our detectives have done outstanding investigative work over the past 48 hours, with tremendous assistance from the U.S. Marshal’s Fugitive Task Force, as well as Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Mississippi Highway Patrol, Starkville Police, and Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Office,”  said Mississippi State University Police Chief Georgia Lindley. “We appreciate the hard work and cooperation of all involved.”

Detectives learned Jones might have hopped a bus to Memphis to hide out.

A regional fugitive task force was waiting on him.

”Our regional guys got a tip to go to the bus station in Memphis and pick up an individual that they did.  They took that individual, based on the fact that he was a fugitive from justice and there was a robbery warrant out for his arrest.” said DeSoto Sheriff’s Spokesman Dick Hackett

There are still two other suspects being sought.

The murder shocked people across the state, because of MSU andStarkville’s reputation for safety.

”There was never a time when I felt unsafe on campus.” said  Julie Nelson who recently graduated from MSU after five years on campus.

”I lived on campus, lived in the dorms, I lived in a Sorority House on Campus, always felt very safe, very safe coming in at night, leaving in the mornings walking to class.

The Most recent statistics from The U.S. Department of Education show no murders or killings on campus or the dorms.

The most reported crime, burglary, saw a slight increase on campus, and a decrease in the dorms.

Nelson says that makes Sanderson’s death all the more shocking. ”I was extremely surprised and extremely disappointed, because I felt like Mississippi State has that reputation of having such a safe campus and I don’t think it’s anything to even worry about at all.”