Attorney on priest's death: There's much more to this story

Jeremy Wayne Manieri leaving court Thursday in Waveland.
Jeremy Wayne Manieri leaving court Thursday in Waveland.

WAVELAND, MS (WLOX) - "There is much more to the story than the media knows." That comment came Thursday morning from the attorney representing Jeremy Manieri.

Manieri is the Waveland man accused of killing a Catholic priest July 10. After an initial court appearance, the attorney for the accused killer told reporters this case is far from open and shut.

The mob of media that greeted the 31-year-old accused killer seemed to surprise him. But he left his court hearing willing to talk.

"I'm not planning on bonding out," Manieri said as reporters shouted questions at him.

Even if Manieri could post the $2 million bond, he'd still have to stay in jail. That's because he was on probation for failing to register as a sex offender.

"He, in all likelihood, is going to be revoked on probation. He's not going to have a bond or an option for a bond," said Manieri's attorney, Brian Alexander.

Alexander knows Manieri reportedly confessed to killing Father Ed Everitt after his arrest at a Florida hotel. But Alexander told reporters, don't focus on that confession.

"Admitting you did an action is one thing. Whether or not you had proper motivation to do that is the real question."

Alexander said Manieri had not known Father Everitt very long and didn't even know he was a priest.

"There's much more to this than y'all are aware of. I know that's why y'all are here, and I'm not trying to taunt you with that. I'm sort of limited to what I can say."

He said Manieri is not the monster he's being made out to be.

"It's going to be born out by the evidence that he did not do anything that just an average, reasonable person would not do. And when the facts start coming out and you see, he's going to be a much more sympathetic figure. Because at this point, you've only heard law enforcement. And they want to leak things that are not particularly flattering, out of context often."

The attorney's comments didn't surprise Waveland Police Chief Jimmy Varnell.

"It's a heinous crime of killing a human being. I can't think of any reason anyone would be sympathetic for him," Chief Varnell said.

Marieri is charged with murder and grand larceny. Assistant District Attorney Crosby Parker told WLOX News those charges could still be upgraded to capital murder. But that decision will be left up to a Grand Jury.

Marieri is due back in court for a preliminary hearing August 18th.

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