Pike County jurors fail to reach unanimous verdict in murder trial of woman burned to death

Published 4:59 pm Monday, October 16, 2017

A Mississippi judge has declared a mistrial after a jury failed to reach a unanimous verdict in the trial of a man charged with burning a woman to death.

Jurors brought to Bateville from Pike County had deliberated between nine and 10 hours in the trial of 29-year-old Quinton Tellis. The deliberations started Sunday and ended today, when the jury indicated that it was not able to agree on a verdict.

Tellis could have faced up to life in prison without parole had he been convicted of capital murder in the death of 19-year-old Jessica Chambers.

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District Attorney John Champion said  the government will retry Tellis in Chambers’ death.

“We’re going to come back and do this again,” he said.

Chambers was found walking along a road near her burning car the night of Dec. 6, 2014 in Courtland, Mississippi, about 60 miles south of Memphis, Tennessee.

Firefighters and paramedics treated her at the scene and spoke with her. She had third-degree burns over most of her body when she died hours later in a Memphis hospital.