Guilty Plea In Controversial MS Hit & Run

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(Panola County, MS) Matthew Whitten Darby has entered a guilty plea for the hit and run death of a man there and in a church burglary case.

Darby was indicted by a Panola County Grand Jury in the hit-and-run death of Johnnie Lee Butts just outside Como. MS.

Butts died in July, 2012 when he was hit by a car driven by Darby on Mississippi Highway 310.

Some people alleged Darby hit and killed Butts on purpose and called it a hate crime.

Butts’ cousin Freddie Cobb told us, ”It’s a good possibility. I mean, who knows for sure, you know.”

”This is absolutely, not a hate crime,” said Farese who told us last July his own investigators even came to the same conclusion. ”There’s no basis in fact for that allegation and I think that’ll be confirmed by the District Attorney’s Office as well as the FBI when they complete their investigation.”

Darby was sentenced to 20 years for the hit and run and another 7 years for a church burglary.

The sentences will be served consecutively.

Dennis Turner will have more on this story on News Channel 3.

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