published Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

Jury convicts former Henderson County sheriff

JACKSON, Tenn. — A jury in Madison County has convicted a former Henderson County sheriff of attempted voluntary manslaughter and using a weapon during a felony.

The Jackson Sun reports the jury returned Monday with the verdict against Ricky Lunsford.

Lunsford's attorney, Mark Donahoe, said the verdict was a relief for his client, who initially had faced a charge of attempted murder. The jury acquitted him of aggravated kidnapping and aggravated assault charges.

"I think Rick was relieved the case was over," Donahoe said. "He is relieved we know where everything is headed now. I think he is pleased the jury agreed that he did not try to murder (Mary). Overall he is in good spirits."

Investigators had previously said that Lunsford forced his wife, Mary Lunsford, to leave a bar with him at gunpoint on April 29. She broke free and police said Ricky Lunsford fired several shots as Mary Lunsford ducked between cars in the parking lot. She was not injured.

Prosecutor Gus Radford declined to comment on the verdict.

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