Panola County constable killed in crash in Batesville

Constable killed in crash with stolen truck

BATESVILLE, Miss. (WMC) - A Panola County constable was killed Thursday in a crash in Batesville.

District Attorney John Champion identified the constable as Raye Hawkins.

“We had a tragedy occur here in Batesville, Constable Raye Hawkins was killed as a result in the line of duty as a result of a pursuit that began in Tallahatchie County,” said Champion.

The crash happened on Highway 35 and 6 in Batesville around 2:30 p.m. Thursday.

Investigators say two teens, 15-year-old Jonathan Taylor and 16-year-old Darion Dogan, stole a 2018 Chevy Colorado in the Charleston, Mississippi area.

A Tallahatchie County deputy spotted them and turned his blue lights on, and they took off headed toward Batesville.

Hawkins heard the call and headed out.

Investigators say that’s when the stolen truck crashed into Hawkins’ vehicle, killing him instantly.

“Raye Hawkins was the kind of public servant that he came to help any time we had a problem in Batesville. If Raye was in ear shot of that radio he was coming to help,” said Batesville Police Chief Jimmy McCloud.

Jonathan Taylor and Darion Dogan
Jonathan Taylor and Darion Dogan (Source: DeSoto County Jail)

McCloud said Hawkins started out as a Batesville police officer in the 1990s and soon ran for constable.

Hawkins’ son is on the Batesville police force and the chief says he was first on the scene.

The two teens were not injured and are behind bars. They are being charged with felony murder.

Champion says under Mississippi law the teenagers will be tried as adults.

The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation is assisting.

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