Rocky Mount, VA - Former Franklin County Sheriff Ewell Hunt's defense team has appealed his guilty verdict, and has promised to continue to fight for Hunt's innocence.
Tuesday in Rocky Mount, Hunt, was found guilty of misconduct on behalf of an elected official. He was given a $500 fine and a 30 day jail sentence, which was suspended.
This ruling stems from the way Hunt handled a 2011 Memorial Day murder, allegedly involving his former deputy Jonathan Agee, of Agee's ex-wife, Jennifer.
The judge said he found Hunt guilty, not for what he did, but for what he didn't do. Hunt had 24 minutes between the time he learned Agee was possibly headed to hurt his ex-wife, and the time Jennifer Agee was gunned down. Those 24 minutes proved to be pivotal. The defense argued Hunt did all he could; thinking, Agee was headed to Salem rather than Roanoke, to meet Jennifer. But the prosecution argued what he should have done was immediately issue a "be on the lookout" alert to surrounding law enforcement agencies, something he did not do.
"He was doing everything he could to try and get a handle on where Jonathan Agee was, and use any method that he could within his power, on a Monday, sitting in his front yard on Memorial Day to stop him, and he did exactly that," said Hunt's defense attorney, Bill Stanley.
"The first thing you do is get the word out in as broad of a fashion as possible for the safety of the community. That was something that was never done in this particular matter," said Mike Doucette, the case's Prosecutor.
The defense has filed an appeal, so it is possible that this ruling could be reversed.