Man charged in death of 2 Sumrall firefighters pleads guilty

Man charged in death of 2 Sumrall firefighters pleads guilty
Brandon Chance Eaton, 34, pleaded guilty to three felony counts of DUI. (Source: Lamar County Jail)

LAMAR COUNTY, Miss. (WDAM) - A Sumrall man charged in connection to a 2017 hit-and-run that killed two Sumrall volunteer firefighters pleaded guilty Monday in Lamar County Circuit Court.

Brandon Chance Eaton, 34, pleaded guilty to three felony counts of DUI in the wreck that killed 80-year-old Clinton Alvin Beasley and 53-year-old Loretta Ann Sykes and injured a third firefighter.

The District Attorney has recommended a sentence of 60 years in prison with 30 years to serve, including credit for time served, according to the guilty plea.

Sumrall police said Eaton was traveling south on Mississippi Highway 589 when he veered onto Oloh Road and struck the three firefighters just after 6 p.m. on March 15, 2017. The firefighters, members of the Oloh Volunteer Fire Department, were directing traffic after a truck had become tangled in power lines on the opposite side of Highway 589.

Authorities at the scene of the hit-and-run that killed two volunteer firefighters.
Authorities at the scene of the hit-and-run that killed two volunteer firefighters. (Source: WDAM)

Beasley and Sykes were pronounced dead at the scene. A third volunteer firefighter, Shaun Huhn, was transported by ambulance to Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg.

Police found Eaton and his vehicle on Magnolia Crossing Road, about six miles from the scene. Eaton was taken into custody and booked in the Lamar County Jail.

Eaton was originally charged with leaving the scene of an accident causing death before having his charges upgraded to include three counts of aggravated DUI. His bond was upgraded to $3.1 million.

Eaton had a criminal record and was a convicted felon at the time of the wreck .

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