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‘It’s a disgrace’: Father of homicide victim blames judges for not locking up daughter’s alleged killer

Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 8:52 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Spurgeon Banyard went from planning for his oldest daughter to take over the family business to planning her funeral.

On June 30, Kaylin Banyard was gunned down in the 3100 block of Terry Road.

“She was going to graduate from Hinds Community College with an early childcare degree,” he said. “We were grooming her to take over the family business once my wife stepped away.”

Banyard was murdered on June 30, 2021. Her alleged killer was out on bond for previous felony...
Banyard was murdered on June 30, 2021. Her alleged killer was out on bond for previous felony charges at the time.(Banyard family)

Banyard and his wife Katrina opened Foundation First Development Center about six or seven years ago, fulfilling Katrina’s lifelong dream of owning her own daycare.

That dream was going to continue on even after Katrina stepped aside, with Kaylin set to follow in her mother’s footsteps.

Then, Banyard received the late-night phone call no parent wants to receive.

“We had just gone to bed when the phone rang. It was my daughter’s friend girl. ‘Mr. Banyard, Kaylin has been shot,’” he said. “She said Kaylin (was still) talking and I said, ‘keep talking.’”

Kaylin was transported by ambulance to the University of Mississippi Medical Center, where she succumbed to her injuries.

Spurgeon remembers walking into the hospital room to look at Kaylin’s body.

“She... looked like she was asleep,” he said. “I was telling her, ‘wake up baby, wake up.’

“I wanted to pick her up and bring her home. We stayed in the room with her for about an hour.”

Banyard said all of that heartache could have been avoided had her alleged killer been locked up.

Kaylin is one of at least a dozen people in Jackson killed this year by a repeat offender.

“My number one job is to be the protector of my children, which I have three daughters,” he said. “To see his criminal record being read out in court, it’s a failure with the judges in Hinds County.”

Her alleged shooter, Terrance Young, was out on bond in connection with multiple felony charges when the incident occurred.

“If the judges had done their jobs, he wouldn’t have been able to murder my daughter,” Banyard said. “Just like the governor said, part of Jackson’s problem is the judges. Criminals commit acts and get bonds, and they’re out on bond still committing crimes.”

“The day the Kaylin was murdered, I went to her house,” Katrina said. “As we sat there talking, she mentioned those charges, and she said, ‘mama, I don’t know what JPD is doing.’ She said, ‘I gave them everything on him - his address, his mom’s name, everywhere he could possibly be, and they’ve not picked him up.’”

Gov. Tate Reeves recently announced a new initiative to help address crime in the capital city, which includes increasing the presence of Capitol Police in the Capitol Complex Improvement District (CCID) and allowing the Mississippi Highway Patrol to run radar along state and federal roads in the city limits.

Reeves announced the initiative as Jackson is on tap to have the deadliest year on record. Eighty-three homicides had been reported through July 19, about 23 more than were reported through the same time in 2020.

Of the 32 people arrested for murder this year, at least 13 are repeat offenders.

Six of those offenders were out on bond when they were arrested again, three were on probation or supervised release, and three others had wrapped up their sentences. Court records for another individual, Dezmon Clinton, a juvenile, were not available on the state’s electronic court’s website.

SuspectPrevious chargesBond/sentenceJudge
Augena FunchessMurder$50,000 bondClinton Municipal Judge Steven Boone; left in place by Circuit Judge Tomie Green
Johnnie DonaldsonPoss. of a controlled substance8 years suspended to five years of non-adjudicated probation with successful completion of drug court; was arrested three times for failure to complete drug court, but did not have probation revokedCircuit Court Judge Winston Kidd
Deantay DuffieStrong-arm robbery10 years in prison, with five suspended and five years of post-release supervisionFormer Circuit Court Judge Jeff Weill
Cotrell WilsonAggravated domestic violence20 years - 15 years suspended and five years probation; Was given one year to serve, but with credit for time served, was returned to probation.Winston Kidd
Christopher JenkinsPoss. of methamphetamine$5,000 bondCounty Court - signature unclear
Desmond LindseyArmed robbery$50,000 bond, reduced to $10,000 bond; case has yet to go trialSet in Jackson Municipal Court, reduced to $10,000 by Judge Johnnie McDaniels; $10k left in place by Tomie Green
DeAngelo JacksonConvicted felon in poss. of a firearm (previous charge unknown)$10,000 bondJackson Municipal Court judge - signature unclear
Jaylan LawsonReceiving stolen property; receiving stolen property10 years in prison, with 4 years suspended and 4 years of post-supervision release (sentenced in 2017)Former Circuit Court Judge William Gowan
Terrance YoungAttempted carjacking; house burglary and kidnapping$2,500 bond for attempted carjacking; released on his own recognizance for house burglary; later indicted on burglary and kidnapping chargeJackson Municipal Court judge - signature unclear
Earnest GuiseFelon in poss. of a firearm (previous convictions are unknown)Sentenced to 5 years, with 4 years, 364 days suspended; 2 years supervised probation; was still on probation when he was charged with murderWinston Kidd
Christopher JohnsonPoss. of cocaine10-day sentence; no probationCircuit Judge Faye Peterson
Charlie ThomasPoss. of methamphetamine
Poss. of marijuana with a firearm
Convicted felon in poss. of a firearm (Previous charges are unknown)
$30,000 bondCounty Court Judge Johnnie McDaniels
Dezmon ClintonmurderClinton allegedly shot and killed another man, Nicholas Terry, on June 17 weeks after police say he shot and killed Brendan Stuckey on May 27.Clinton is a juvenile and no further details are available on his cases.

Among those arrested was Earnest Guise. Guise only recently completed two years of supervised probation when he was arrested again for allegedly shooting a man inside a home on Roland Street last month, according to court records and police reports.

More than two years prior, Guise was sentenced to five years in prison for being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.

Hinds County Circuit Judge Winston Kidd suspended four years and 364 days of that sentence and Guise was released after being given credit for time served. He also received two years of supervised probation, which ended earlier this year.

Kidd would not comment on the case. The judge, who also presides over the circuit court’s drug court program, also would not comment on the Johnnie Donaldson case.

Donaldson, who was arrested in connection with a March 21 shooting outside the M-Bar Sports Grill, was sentenced to eight years in prison in December 2019 on a drug possession charge. However, Circuit Judge Faye Peterson set aside that sentence pending Donaldson’s successful completion of drug court.

Court records indicate Donaldson never completed the intervention program and warrants were twice issued for his arrest prior to the M-Bar incident. On March 8, just days before the shooting, he was released from jail on the condition that he again comply with drug court rules. Donaldson again failed to complete drug court and Kidd issued a bench warrant for his arrest in April. He was already at the Raymond jail when he was arrested on a murder charge.

District Attorney Jody Owens, who was not in office at the time of Guise’s conviction, said it’s hard to predict whether a suspect will become a repeat offender.

“In hindsight, we’d like them to not be out in the public to take a life,” he said. “But it’s hard to predict crime factors.”

Young, meanwhile, had been indicted on two felony charges prior to his arrest in the Banyard case.

In September 2019, he was booked for attempted carjacking. Months later, in November, he was charged again, that time for breaking into a home in the 1200 block of Garden Park Drive.

For the carjacking, Young was released on a $2,500 bond by a Jackson Municipal Court judge. In the burglary case, he was released on his own recognizance, also by a city judge. A Hinds County Grand Jury indicted him on house burglary and kidnapping charges in January 2020.

Young’s case is assigned to Circuit Judge Tomie Green. He is expected to go to trial on that matter on November 1.

Prior to the Banyard shooting, Young had been allowed to remain free on bond.

A little less than three weeks after being arrested in connection with the Banyard case, Young is still behind bars at the Hinds County Detention Center.

During his initial appearance, Municipal Court Judge Jeffrey Reynolds gave Young a $1 million bond on the murder count and a $500,000 bond on the drive-by count.

In a hand-written note on the bond documents, Reynolds wrote, “The defendant is a present danger to the citizens of Jackson.”

Jackson Municipal Court Judge Jeffrey Reynolds says Young is a "danger to the citizens of...
Jackson Municipal Court Judge Jeffrey Reynolds says Young is a "danger to the citizens of Jackson."(WLBT)

For Banyard, though, the question remains. Why was Young free to begin with?

“My daughter had pressed charges against him for threatening her life with a gun,” he said. “Another young lady had charges against him for threatening her life with a gun.

“He had five charges against him and was out there walking free... It’s a disgrace.”

Jail records show Young is facing four felony charges. It was not known if Young had been indicted in the attempted carjacking case.

Banyard, a principal at Peeple’s Middle School, can only think of what could have been. The longtime educator had high hopes for his daughter, as he does for all three of his children.

“Kaylin was a lovely daughter,” he said. “I know sometimes people will tell not-truthful stories about their children... ask any of her friends, any of her relatives. She was the kind of young lady that had a heart of gold and would give you the shirt off her back. She was too nice. If you crossed her, you would get cut off. That was it.”

Banyard’s middle child, Taylor, 20 will be a junior at Jackson State University this fall. She is majoring in social work. His youngest daughter, Kennedy, is going into eighth grade at Clinton Junior High.

“It’s hard, especially on my daughter Taylor, because they’re one year apart. You never saw one without the other,” he said. “It’s hard on Kennedy because that was her big sister... because you lean on and learn from your big sister.”

It’s been equally difficult for Spurgeon and Katrina. “She was really my wife’s best friend. They had a mother-daughter relationship that was unbreakable.”

Kaylin’s funeral is 11 a.m. on Wednesday, July 21 at Zion Travelers Baptist Church in Jackson. She will be laid to rest at Garden Memorial Park on U.S. Highway 49.

Banyard said the incident has changed his perspective, but it hasn’t shaken his faith. “I know I’m a believer in the Lord and I am a firm believer in the Lord,” he said. “We’re regular attendees of the church. I’m a deacon. We attend Sunday School. I understand the Bible is real. It’s just the fact that no parent wants to bury their child. They want their child to bury them.

“I never thought I would lose one of my children to such a senseless violent crime.”

“It’s us today, but it could be you tomorrow,” Katrina said. “When it hits you, then it becomes really personal. But we all need to join together and try to work to whatever we need to do to get Jackson back on track. We need to do it.”

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