Man shot to death in Poplarville

Randy Prince (Source: The Prince family)
Randy Prince (Source: The Prince family)
Virgil Matthews, Jr. (Source: Pearl River County Sheriff's Dept.)
Virgil Matthews, Jr. (Source: Pearl River County Sheriff's Dept.)

By Al Showers - bio | email

POPLARVILLE, MS (WLOX) - Sheriff's officials say Randy Prince was involved in a heated altercation with another man outside of a house Sunday morning. That's when Virgil Matthews came out of the home, stood on the porch and shot Prince.

Pearl River County Coroner Derek Turnage said, "I got here to find one victim that had suffered one fatal gun-shot wound."

Turnage said the bullet hit Prince in his chest/shoulder area.

"I think it was very senseless. I don't think it had to be like that," said Tara Raine. "Whatever the situation was, whatever the motive was."

Raine is the victim's cousin. She said the three men involved in the incident were all friends and would often hang out at each others' homes.

"If he was tussling with somebody else, how is somebody else going to come out the house and just start shooting and don't even know why they're tussling?" asked Prince's cousin, LaDonna Raine.

Exactly what the men were arguing about remains a mystery.

Donnie Saucier is the Chief Investigator with the PRC Sheriff's Department.

"There's speculation at this point, but we can't rely on speculation." Saucier said. "We just want to rely on facts."

Whatever the reason, Sheriff's officials say Matthews is now under arrest.

Saucier said, "He's been charged with murder."

Family members say Randy Prince was a jack of all trades who enjoyed fixing cars and construction work.

"Randy had a good heart, and he really loved his family," Tara Raine said.

Matthews is being held in the Pearl River County jail awaiting an initial court appearance. Sunday's murder marked the third in Pearl River County this year. Last year, no murders were reported in the county.

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