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Joyce Godbolt gets 20-year sentence

A Brookhaven woman was ordered Monday to serve the full 20-yearsentence for the November 1999 shooting death of her formerhusband, a city police officer, according to Lincoln County CircuitCourt records.

Joyce Godbolt, 35, of 2851 Beard Road, Wesson, was sentenced to20 years after pleading guilty Aug. 7 to manslaughter and burglaryof a dwelling in connection with off-duty officer Chris Godbolt’sshooting Nov. 15 at a South First Street residence. She wassentenced to five years on the burglary charge, with the sentencesto run concurrently.

“It was difficult case, but I think it was a fair sentence,”said District Attorney Dunn Lampton.

Lampton said Chris Godbolt was a fine officer and a fine personwith whom he had ridden with on many occasions while working oncases.

“He was always readily available and willing to help me and myoffice,” Lampton said.

According to the police report, Chris Godbolt, 40, was shotaround 4:09 a.m. Nov. 15, 1999, at the 503 South First Street homeof Beverly Howard as she was preparing to take him back to his homein Bogue Chitto. Howard was a friend of Godbolt’s and the two hadbeen to church earlier that night.

Following an investigation, police learned the weapon used wasGodbolt’s service revolver, which Mrs. Godbolt had taken from theofficer’s home.

A psychologist testified Monday that Joyce Godbolt was underdiminished capacity due to sleep depravation. Lampton disputed thatassertion and indicated her actions were “clear cut.”

In addition to the sentence, Judge Keith Starrett ordered JoyceGodbolt to pay a $5,000 fine, $5,000 to the Crime VictimsCompensation Fund and $4,290 restitution for funeral expenses.

“It was a tragedy all the way around,” Lampton said about thecase.