Forrest County man faces new rape and murder charges

FORREST COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - A Forrest County man already serving life in prison for rape will be back in court this summer for the rape and murder of another woman more than 30 years ago.

A trial date has been set for July 23 in the capital murder case of Andrew Harris. He was indicted in December of 2010 for the 1979 rape and murder of Eatonville resident Eva Gail Patterson. a crime that initially sent three other innocent men to prison for 30 years.

Larry Ruffin, Phillip Bivens, and Bobby Ray Dixon were exonerated of the crime in 2010 after DNA evidence from the scene didn't match any of them. It did match Andrew Harris, who was already in prison serving life for the rape of a south Forrest County woman in 1981.

Harris could face the death penalty if convicted.