Man accused of killing Ole Miss student makes initial court appearance

Published: Jul. 27, 2022 at 10:11 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - On Wednesday, Sheldon Timothy Herrington Jr. made his initial court appearance inside a Lafayette County courthouse.

The 22-year-old is being charged with first-degree murder in the death of his Ole Miss classmate Jimmie “Jay” Lee.

It was a packed crowd inside the courtroom.

All eyes were on Herrington as his attorneys asked for his bond hearing to be pushed back until next month.

The hearing, which was roughly five minutes, took place in Judge Gray Tollison’s courtroom.

As Herrington was going in and out of court, supporters of Lee were protesting in honor of the Jackson native. Fellow students who know Lee and Herrington said the two just graduated from the university back in May.

Now they’re shocked to know one is believed to be dead, and the other is allegedly responsible for the murder.

“It was a shocking moment and it was so, it was just a 360 moment to be like, wow, we didn’t think he would be dead, and we didn’t think that someone we knew and were in close quarters with would be responsible for his murder,” said Jaylyn Johnson, who was friends with Lee and also attends Ole Miss.

According to Oxford police, Lee, who’s a part of the LGBTQ community, disappeared on July 8th.

Investigators said Lee was last seen leaving Campus Walk Apartments. On Monday, July 11th, Lee’s car was found by a towing company at the Molly Barr Trails Apartment Complex.

Police believe Lee had been visiting the complex before disappearing.

It’s been nearly 3 weeks since Lee first went missing, and so far Lee’s body has not been found. Those who were protesting for Lee outside the courthouse believe The Jackson native was attacked due to being a member of the LGBTQ community.

“I think this was a terroristic attack against Jay Lee,” said Chloe Serca-Kelly, who drove from Memphis to protest in honor of Lee. “We need to start loving each other and stop living in fear of things that are different from us.”

“Jay Lee was irreplaceable, said John Taylor Wilbanks, who came from Memphis to protest in honor of Lee. “She was irreplaceable, and her sisters miss her. She cannot come back, but we celebrate her life and we can make sure everything that she did, the beauty that she brought into this world, gets remembered and it gets talked about.”

District 34 State Representative Kevin Horan is one of the attorneys representing Herrington.

He declined to give a comment following the hearing.

When it comes to what’s next, Herrington’s bond hearing has been set for August 9th at 10 o’clock in the morning at the Lafayette County Circuit Courthouse.

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