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Copiah man killed during Saturday family altercation

A Lincoln County man has been charged with murder in theSaturday night shooting death of a Copiah County man, authoritiessaid.

Xavier Demond Vaughn, 26, of 691 Baldwin Loop, remained incustody this morning, accused of the Saturday night killing of23-year-old Billy Ray Miller, Jr., of 1191 Cain Road in Wesson,said Lincoln County Sheriff Steve Rushing.

The shooting happened during a fight while the men wereattending a family gathering at a residence at 2130 Old Highway 51,Rushing said. The fight was reported at 10:07 p.m. and lawenforcement authorities were dispatched to the scene.

“While deputies were en route, another call came in to advisethat shots were fired,” said Rushing.

When deputies arrived, Miller had been shot in the head andanother man, 29-year-old Ed Willie Brown Jr. of Hazlehurst, hadbeen shot in the leg. The suspect in the shootings was identifiedas Vaughn, who was still at the scene.

Miller was pronounced dead at the scene, said Lincoln CountyCoroner Clay McMorris. An autopsy is scheduled for Monday night andresults should be available in the next few days, the coronersaid.

Brown refused medical treatment at the scene, but he indicatedhe may go to Hardy-Wilson Hospital in Hazlehurst later, Rushingsaid. It was not known today whether Brown sought thattreatment.

Rushing described Brown’s injury as minor. No charges have beenfiled yet against Vaughn in the Brown shooting.

At this time, the motive for the altercation and the shootingsis unknown. Also, the relationship between Miller and Vaughn wasnot immediately known.

“We’re still talking to witnesses,” said Chief InvestigatorJohnny Hall. “It’s still under investigation.”

Vaughn, Miller and Brown were attending a large family gatheringhonoring a recently deceased loved one on Saturday night. Hall andRushing said there was a large group at the family gathering andthe crowd was still in turmoil when deputies arrived.

Hazlehurst Funeral Home is handling the arrangements forMiller’s funeral.