The Commercial Appeal from Memphis, Tennessee on December 2, 1988 · 6
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The Commercial Appeal from Memphis, Tennessee · 6

Memphis, Tennessee
Issue Date:
Friday, December 2, 1988
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iViSjftK tUliiON MEMPHIS FRIDAY DECEMBER 2 1988 THE COMMERCIAL APPEAL A21: Callers say they saw wanted duo By Thom Uahrukiewicz Jonesboro Ark Bureau CARUTHERSVILLE Mo — Police here Thursday received about eight telephone tips from people across the United States claiming to have seen a Caruth-ersville couple wanted in the 1986 slaying of a Blytheville irk man A re-enactment of the Oct 19 1986 slaying of Southwestern Bell Telephone lineman Charles Sigmin was the lead segment on Wednesday night's broadcast of NBC's Unsolved Mysteries Authorities said they are investiga-ting all leads but none of the eight calls have led to solid information on the slaying according to Pemiscot County Mo Pros Atty Mike Hazel Sigmin 19 was shot seven times with 12- and 25-caliber handguns and was struck in the head with a steam iron Authorities are searching for Siginin’s estranged wife Ann and a man described as her boyfriend Gary Goff Both were questioned after the shooting which happened in Goff's Caruthersville home but were released because of insufficient evidence They disappeared several weeks later and warrants for their arrest were issued in spring 1987 Hazel said "People have been calling in from all over the country” said Caruthersville Police dispatcher Linda Hillhouse "They're saying they've seen someone who looks like (Mrs Sigmin and Goff)" The segment titled "Witch Hunt” gave two strikingly different portrayals of the case On one side Sigmin was painted as a caring husband who was lured to Goff's home and shot the other claimed Sigmin came to Goff’s home in a drunken rage and Goff shot in self-defense The segment was promoted as the “search for an Arkansas lady who is believed to have killed her husband in a ritualistic witchcraft slaying” NBC publicists claim Mrs Sigmin placed a voodoo doll on Sigmin's pillow just before he died The claim was disputed by the segment's producer Cynthia Buzzard of Cosgrove-Meurer Productions in Los Angeles and lawmen in Pemiscot County and Northeast Arkansas have declined to discuss a link between the doll and the slaying The segment featured actors from Memphis and Jonesboro Ark Plane crash kills 3 men ROAN MOUNTAIN Tenn (AP) — The bodies of three men were found Thursday near wreckage of a small airplane that crashed atop a snowy mountain bluff officials said Relatives and business associates confirmed the identities of the three as pilot Lonny Diamond 50 of Sallisaw Okla William Rowe 50 of Fort Smith Ark and Mickey Malone 46 of Van Buren Ark Rescue workers on foot reached the rugged area of Roan Mountain several hours after the plane's emergency transmitter began to emit a beep The single-engine Beechcraft 35 is believed to have crashed Wednesday night as the three men were traveling from near Van Buren Ark to Greensboro NC ""About the only identifiable part oi the aircraft is the tail section" said Sgt Robert Walsh of the North Carolina Highway Patrol “The rest was pretty well destroyed There was evidence that there was a pretty severe fire" he said The wreckage was found in Mitchell County NC just across the line from Carter County Tenn about 6200 feet up the mountain Gifts cheer crime victim Memphians have opened their hearts to Eugenia Binkins a young crime victim whose story was told Sunday in The Commercial Appeal Ms Binkins 19 and Mark Jones 18 were shot in the head by robbers last year while sitting in a car at Glenview Park Jones was killed and Ms Binkins cannot walk or talk and is a resident of Rosewood Manor nursing home Ms Binkins has received offers of food clothing and some money said her mother Beverly Clayhorne One person donated a television set and another has offered a video recorder so that Ms Binkins can watch motivational tapes In an article Sunday Ms Clay-borne related her quest for medical rehabilitation for her daughter who has no medical insurance Ms Binkins is the mother of two children including an infant born while she was hospitalized after the shooting Ms Clayborne'Atamily lives in Chicago Ex-sheriff is given 18 months By Clay Hathorn Northwest Miss Bureau OXFORD Miss — A federal judge sentenced former Humphreys County sheriff John Allen Jones Jr to 18 months in Erison Thursday for taking ribes to protect a gambling business and filing a false income tax return Jones' lawyer Lee Abraham Jr of Greenwood said he thought US Dist Judge Neal Biggers showed leniency Abraham said the judge apparently considered Jones' reputation as an “enthusiastic" lawman and the tradition of tolerance for gambling businesses in the Delta county He faced a maximum Discovery of body described By Marie Chewe-Harmon Nortlwast Miss Bureau TUPELO Miss — An Itawamba County man testified Thursday that he discovered the decomposed body of slain Tupelo resident Sharon Wright five months after she had been reported missing James Wright 48 the victim's husband is charged with murder in the Nov 25 1986 slaying He reported the woman missing the next day Nearly a year after the incident Wright was arrested and authorities said a "family fuss” was believed to be the motive in the case Bobby Johnson testified that he and a friend were riding horses in a wooded area of Itawamba County when they discovered Mrs Wright’s body face down in Mantachie Creek The area is about 35 miles from Tupelo “His horse darted sideways then jumped and he (Johnson’s companion) said There lays a body!’ ” Johnson recalled The pair flagged down a third man whom they asked to call police Johnson testified Tupelo Police Department Det Bart Aguirre told jurors that when he examined Mrs Wright's red Chevette he found the passenger window had been broken and that a concrete block was on the front seat Aguirre testified that he supplied dental and medical records to former state medical examiner Thomas Bennett who performed the autopsy on the body Mrs Wright’s body was so badly decomposed that officials had to rely primarily on dental records to identify it The defense has questioned whether the records are conclusive Also testifying were Bennett Dr P K Thomas Mrs Wright’s physician W L Kellum the victim's dentist and Dr Dave Woodard a forensic dentist from Kentucky Earlier testimony from the Wrights' two sons revealed that the couple had argued about Mrs Wright’s alleged lover and a divorce the night before she was reported missing Wright has contended throughout the investigation that he last saw his wife the night of Nov 25 because she was to leave early the next morning for a Thanksgiving luncheon at work She never made it to her job that morning A hot plate a slow cooker and some pies were in the vehicle Aguirre said Testimony is scheduled to resume in the case today at 9 am Performers are needed for follies Jonesboro Ark Bureau WANTED: Hams show-offs and assorted other closet performers to star in Follies '89 in Jonesboro Ark in April The event sponsored through the Foundation of Arts is seeking hundreds of performers for the musical-variety show April 14-16 at The Forum said Marilyn Hummelstein general chairman Ticket prices for the shows have not been set she said Although primarily a fundraiser for the Foundation of Arts in Jonesboro the follies also seek to bring this community of about 35000 together for fun and entertainment Mrs Hummelstein said The last follies production in Jonesboro was in 1985 That show featured 75 performers and raised about $20000 for the foundation Talent Mrs Hummelstein said is not a prerequisite for performing "We want to get people that you would never think of being on stage” she said The- show will be directed through Jerome Cargill Productions of New York Mrs Hummelstein said Persons interested in performing or serving on one of 10 committees are asked to call The Forum at (501) 935-2726 penalty of a $35000 fine and 13 years in prison Jones 52 of Belzoni who admitted accepting about $48000 from 1985 until he left office in December 1987 pleaded guilty to one count of accepting bribes and one count of filing a false income tax return William R Gentry and Larry Bailey both of Quitman County were each sentenced to four months in prison Wednesday for Jones $2000 a month in and filing false Income tax returns The charges arose after authorities raided 27 businesses and seized 51 slot machines May 3 in Humphreys and Tallahatchie counties Abraham told Judge Biggers that Jones was a “perfect sheriff for years until he met a woman who caused problems for the former law officer Abraham contended Jones needed money to buy gifts for the woman Jones a married man had testified that he used $14600 of the payoff money to buy a 1986 Chrysler Fifth Avenue for a former girlfriend “The effect of a woman's temptation on a man goes back to the beginning of time” Abraham said He said once Jones was caught he cooperated fully with authorities Abraham said he had letters from residents who said they would still vote for Jones Jones served three terms 1976-87 and was defeated in the Democratic primary last year by Sonny McMillian McMillian the current sheriff helped federal agents crack the case by wearing a hidden tape recorder when Gentry and Bailey offered him $2000 monthly payoffs to ignore their gambling business Jones who said he is sorry for what he told the judge that McMillian had helped in the arrest because McMillian “was after” the former sheriff Jones said he had arrested McMillian’s son on a theft-related charge McMillian said Thursday the arrest of his son was “years ago" and that the incident had nothing to do with the gambling crackdown Judge Biggers acknowledged that slot machines had been common in clubs and grocery stores in Humphreys County for years The judge said Jones had been punished severely through the loss of his reputation but said the prison sentence was needed to nelp deter other public officials fro m accepting bribes Jones will report to federal prison Jan 3 MID-SOUTH DEATHS TENNESSEE DYERSBURG - Mrs Fannie Suo Sor-rill IS widow of Johnnio W 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