Suspected killer of 8 in MS blames domestic dispute

  • Suspected killer of 8 in MS blames domestic dispute

Suspected killer of 8 in MS blames domestic dispute

The Bogue Chitto man remained hospitalized at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, about an hour drive north of Brookhaven, on Monday morning, receiving treatment for a gunshot wound incurred during his arrest.

Willie Godbolt, 35, stands charged with one count of capital murder and seven counts of first-degree murder, according to police.

Godbolt was taken into custody shortly before 7 a.m. Sunday near Super Jack's at East Lincoln Road and Highway 84.

A witness tells The Associated Press that he had been arguing with his estranged wife about their children when he opened fire inside his in-laws' home after the sheriff's deputy arrived.

Monday morning, a troubling portrait emerging of 35-year old Cory Godbolt, the man accused of going on a horrific killing spree in rural MS that left eight people dead including a sheriff's deputy and two boys.

One of the eight victims was Lincoln County deputy William Durr. Rushing says Durr was married and had an 11-year-old son.

Lincoln County Sheriff Steve Rushing told WLBT that Durr leaves behind a wife and 10-year-old son.

Off duty, Durr also was a ventriloquist who took his puppets to schools and churches. Durr told the newspaper in 2014 he picked up the hobby at age 8.

Mitchell, who was able to escape the first home with Godbolt's wife, said he was "devastated" about what happened.

Information for this article was contributed by Kevin McGill, Russ Bynum and Jeff Amy of The Associated Press; by Daniel Victor and Ellen Ann Fentress of The New York Times; and by Amy B. Wang of The Washington Post. But he said his wife, his wife's sister and one of his wife's daughters were killed. "I thank the law enforcement agencies involved for their hard work", he said. "It don't seem like it's real".

The stepfather-in-law, Vincent Mitchell, said Godbolt's wife and their two children had been staying at his Bogue Chitto home for about three weeks after she left her husband because of domestic violence. "We was talking about me taking my children ... somebody called the officer ... that's what they do, they intervene". But "then he reached into his back pocket".

Lincoln County Coroner Clay McMorris identified five of the victims as Barbara Mitchell, 55, Toccarra May, 35, Brenda May, 53, Ferral Burage, 45, and his wife Shelia Burage, 46.

Authorities say a shooting spree that left eight people dead in MS began with a call regarding a domestic dispute.

Investigators have yet to speak to Godbolt, said MBI spokesman Warren Strain.

The deputy was identified on Sunday as 36-year-old William Durr, a two-year veteran at the sheriff's department and four-year veteran of the Brookhaven Police Department. The other victims were discovered in two separate homes about 15 miles away in Brookhaven, where the bodies of two boys and an adult man and woman were found, Strain said.

"I ain't fit to live, not after what I done", the handcuffed Godbolt, 35, told The Clarion-Ledger Sunday. He says he was shielded from the gunman by his cousin, Jordan Blackwell, who was shot to death. "He was an extremely competitive young man who brought out the competitiveness in those around him".

He noted the "sacrifice" made by law enforcement officers to protect and serve their communities.

The home at 1658 Coopertown Road was the second stop in a deadly shooting rampage over the weekend in Bogue Chitto and Brookhaven that left eight dead, including a deputy.

Mitchell spoke to the AP from his home in Bogue Chitto, Mississippi, which authorities say was the site of the first shootings.