Confessed Killer Changes Plea, Angers Victim's Family - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Confessed Killer Changes Plea, Angers Victim's Family

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by Chris Cannon

TULLAHOMA, Tenn. - The confessed killer of Megan Sharpton has entered a motion to withdraw his guilty plea and go to trial for the murder.

Donnie Jones, Jr. had papers filed on his behalf with the Franklin County Circuit Court on Monday. He wrote the motion to withdraw the guilty plea himself, from prison.

In the filing Jones said he was coerced by his attorney Joseph Ford to plead guilty to killing the 24-year-old nursing student.

Jones said there is evidence that proves he was at another location at the time of the murder and Ford told him that information would not matter.

According to the document, Jones said authorities told him if he did not plead guilty they would find a way to convict his wife, as well.

Jones is asking a judge to grant him a murder trial.

"It was like hearing Megan was dead again. It's like reliving that moment again," said the victim's mother, Kelly Sharpton.

She got a call late Monday morning informing her of Jones' motion to withdraw his plea.

"He admitted his guilt. In his own words he said 'Yes, sir' to the DA when he said is this an accurate description of how you killed Megan Sharpton and he said 'yes, sir it is," Sharpton said.

Tennessee law gave Jones until March 4, 2013 to withdraw his plea. Sharpton had been counting down the days, but one week out, reality set in.

"I'm angry, I'm hurt. Megan deserves better and I'm her mother, and I'll see that she gets it," Sharpton said Monday night.

She feels the system already failed her daughter. She called Jones a career criminal who should have been in prison.

"He should've never been able to cross her path. His family enabled him, the system enabled him. Law enforcement calls him a serial rapist and he was able to cross my daughter's path. Why," Sharpton asked.

If Jones goes to trial for her daughter's murder, she is confident the evidence collected will be enough to send him back to prison.

"DNA in my daughter's burning body is not a lie. His DNA in my child's burning body is not a lie," the mother said.

Sharpton said she and her family will be in court every step of the way.

"If he wants to go, game on, lets go. I'll wear my boots into court and we'll play his game," Sharpton added.

Jones is scheduled to have a hearing on his motion on April 9.


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