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Murder suspects in court

Two defendants charged with murder in separate incidents were inLincoln County Circuit Court this week for hearings.

Joyce Godbolt, 35, of 2851 Beard Road, Wesson, appeared Tuesdayfor a hearing on a murder indictment in the Nov. 15 shooting deathof her former husband, Chris Godbolt. A trial date and any motionswill be heard when the case is set for call May 17.

“For call is to make sure the case is ready for trial,” saidAssistant District Attorney Jerry Rushing.

In another murder indictment, Roosevelt Maxwell Jr., 37, of 212Pennington St., was arraigned on charges of murder and shootinginto an occupied dwelling. Maxwell pleaded not guilty to thecharges.

Maxwell is charged in the March 3 shooting of Tonya Faith Smith,40. Smith was injured in the shooting and died a few days later ata Jackson hospital.

In other court action, several recently-indicted defendantsappeared for arraignment proceedings. An indictment represents onlya belief by the grand jury that there is probable cause to suspecta crime has been committed, and it is not a statement on thedefendant’s guilt or innocence.

Defendants arraigned or those who waived the proceeding andpleaded not guilty to their alleged crimes included:

* Roger Dale Laird, 49, of 171 LutherTrail, Bogue Chitto — unlawful possession of cocaine.
* Michael Kevin Edwards, 33, of 3060Harmony Dr. — sexual battery.
* Vincent Wayne Brown, 35, of 502East Enterprise St. — failure to support minor children.
* James McNulty, 38, of 147 LeaCircle, Jackson — failure to support minor children.
* Barbara Granger, 34, of 1014 OldHighway 24, McComb — felonious bad checks.
* John Forhand, 29, of 2746 BluebirdTrail — felonious bad checks.
* Christopher B. Jones, 37, of 2423New Sight Dr. — felonious bad checks.
* Jennifer Ford, 24, of 616 MountZion Road, Wesson — felonious bad checks.

In the conclusion of an earlier case, State Auditor Phil BryantTuesday announced that his department has returned to LincolnCounty $17,623 that was paid by former deputy tax collector StacyMontgomery, of 525 Richardson Lane, Bogue Chitto.

The audit department received the money April 26 afterMontgomery pleaded guilty March 10 to embezzlement. She wassentenced to seven years suspended for five years probation.