Hub City man convicted again in 2011 murder

Hub City man convicted again in 2011 murder

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - A Hattiesburg man has been convicted of murder for the second time by a jury for the killing of a woman back in 2011.

Jarius Collins was found guilty of the murder of Ebony Jenkins of Crystal Springs Wednesday in court. It took a jury 50 minutes to convict him.

Collins, 30, was convicted in March 2013 for the murder of Jenkins. It took a jury less than 30 minutes to convict Collins, and he was sentenced to life in prison without parole.

The Mississippi Supreme Court ruled that the court failed to suppress Collins' statement to police after he invoked his right to counsel, as well as a further error by allowing Hattiesburg Police Detective Casey Sims to testify as a lay witness regarding cell phone location technology, when such opinion requires the witness be qualified as an expert. This led to Collins conviction being overturned.

Collins was an "acquaintance" of Jenkins, and when she failed to show up for work, family member's contacted police. Jenkins was found dead Dec. 9, 2011, in a wooded area off West 7th Street in Hattiesburg. Forrest County Coroner Butch Benedict said Jenkins' autopsy revealed that she had been shot twice in the back.

Forrest County Circuit Judge Bob Helfrich sentenced Collins to life in prison without parole.