Gulf Coast man gets 2 life sentences after murder conviction

Published 11-17-2018

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GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) - A Mississippi Gulf Coast resident convicted of shooting a man sitting in his girlfriend's car has been sentenced to two terms of life in prison without parole.

Local news outlets report James McDowell was sentenced following his conviction for first-degree murder and being a convicted felon in possession of a gun.

Jurors found McDowell guilty of killing Deverick Johnson in February 2017 in Long Beach. Johnson's girlfriend testified in court that McDowell got in the back seat of her car and was having a normal conversation when McDowell pulled a gun and shot Johnson without provocation.

Harrison County Circuit Judge Larry Bourgeois sentenced the 30-year-old McDowell as a habitual offender. McDowell was previously convicted of shooting into a dwelling, possession of illegal drugs and felon in possession of a gun.

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