Accused killer indicted on 11 counts in New Hampshire while awaiting murder trial in Hinds County

Hinds DA wants bond for Ryan Christopher Hopkins revoked after learning of his alleged crimes
Published: Jun. 13, 2023 at 7:21 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - A New Hampshire grand jury lobs an eleven-count indictment against an accused killer awaiting trial for murder and conspiracy charges in Hinds County.

The indictment, handed down in December 2022, charges Ryan Christopher Hopkins with two counts of kidnapping, five counts of aggravated sexual assault, and several misdemeanors.

Hopkins, initially indicted in June 2020 by a Hinds County grand jury on murder and conspiracy charges for the killing of Celeste McDonald, had been out since mid-2020.

Before his indictment, Judge Faye Peterson set his bond at $50,000 and required him to wear an ankle monitor, none of which was changed after the indictment was issued. Peterson was not over the case at the time, but handled the conditional bond, according to court documents.

Former Senior Circuit Judge Tommie Green presided over the case until her retirement.

A 3 On Your Side investigation in 2019 revealed McDonald had actually tried to press rape charges against Hopkins days before her death, according to her family.

At the time, the Jackson Police Department confirmed the rape charge, but could not determine when she filed the charge nor who she filed it against.

Her body was found in shallow water on April 1 in Mound, Louisiana, and state investigators contend she was killed in Jackson.

In July 2021, Hopkins’ attorney filed a motion to amend the bond to allow him to work as a truck driver and travel as part of that job, but that motion was never granted by Green.

An affidavit by a New Hampshire detective said Hopkins was working as a truck driver and traveled across parts of the country, having apparently done so without the court’s permission, according to a cursory review of documents filed with Hinds County.

The Hinds County District Attorney’s Office filed a motion in March to revoke Hopkins’ bond on the basis of these new felony charges.

Special Judge Frank Vollor, who now presides over the case, has yet to rule on that motion.

Author’s note: A previous version of this story indicated the case was in Judge Peterson’s courtroom because of Peterson’s participation in certain documents associated with the case, such as Hopkins’ conditional bond. It has since been updated to reflect the judges who presided over the case at the time as well as Peterson’s contribution.

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