Husband and wife arrested in racially motivated shooting

A Perry County husband and wife have been arrested and charged with shooting into an occupied dwelling in what authorities believe was a racially motivated crime.

Donnie Sylvester, 42, and Jennifer Sylvester, 25, have each been charged with five counts of aggravated assault, each in connection with a late October incident at the Beaumont home of Renee Hinton.

Hinton, her three sons, and a friend were inside the house when nearly a dozen bullets were fired into the home. No one was injured, but Perry County authorities said it appeared the shooting was a hate crime.

Hinton, who is black, told WDAM the shooting apparently stemmed from her son's friendship with a white female. Sources said the white female is Donnie Sylvester's daughter.

Hinton went on to explain her son was 15 and the girl in question was an elementary school student.

Besides facing aggravated assault charges, Donnie Sylvester is charged with possession of a firearm by a felon, and Jennifer Sylvester is charged with tampering with evidence.