September 20, 2020

Man convicted in deadly crash that killed Mississippi firefighters

A Mississippi man has pleaded guilty to three counts of felony DUI after initially being indicted on charges he left the scene of a crash that killed two volunteer firefighters.

The 15th Circuit Court District Attorney’s office recommended Brandon Chance Eaton, 34, be sentenced to 60 years with 30 to serve, including credit for time served, news outlets reported on Tuesday. He hasn’t been formally sentenced yet.

Sumrall volunteer firefighters Clinton Alvin Beasley, 80, Loretta Ann Sykes, 53, and Shawn Huhn were directing traffic at the scene of a truck crash in March 2017 when Eaton hit them while driving impaired, then drove away, according to toxicology reports and Lamar County Sheriff Danny Rigel.

Beasley and Sykes died, while Huhn was injured.

Beasley had been a volunteer firefighter in Sumrall for 47 years.

The fire station was named for him on the 40th anniversary of his service to Sumrall, The Hattiesburg American previously reported.

After the deaths of Beasley and Sykes, then-Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves ordered that Mississippi flags be lowered in Lamar County to honor the firefighters, the newspaper said.