Suspects Charged in Two Fatal Shootings

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Two men are in custody in Meridian, charged with capital murder and armed robbery, in connection with the shooting death of Jerome Hearn in Meridian.

Bond for both Ricky Thomas, 26, and Fredrick Moore, 32, was set at $1 million on the armed robbery charge. There is no bond for the capital murder charge.

Hearn was found dead in a vehicle outside a vacant house on 23rd Street Friday morning.

Another suspect, 37-year-old Ernest Mosley, Jr., is charged with the murder of Stanley Mason, who was shot outside an apartment at Highway Village in the early morning hours Saturday. Mosley's bond was initially set at $250,000, but was reduced to $40,000 after a preliminary court hearing.

"I want the Hearn family to know, that my son didn't have no involvement in that," said Thomas' mother, Mary Thomas, after his preliminary hearing. "One thing I do know, my son is not guilty. He didn't do that; he didn't kill him. He was nowhere near that scene. He was at my house. We are hurting just like you all are hurting right now."

Because the two shootings happened in such a short time frame, there was speculation that the murders might be connected. Officials said Tuesday that
each shooting revolved around a different issue.

"At this time, we are looking at them as completely separate cases," said Capt. James Sharpe of the Meridian Police Department. "Through our investigation, the death of Mr. Hearn that basically revolved around a drug deal that apparently went the wrong way. And the shooting death of Mr. Stanley Mason, that was basically due to an argument that he had had with the suspect earlier in the evening."

The cases of all three individuals charged will be presented to a grand jury in March 2010.