Family upset by plea deal in 2016 murder case

JASPER, Tennessee (WDEF) – A man initially charged with first degree murder, pleads guilty to a lesser charge in Marion County Criminal Court.

It was an emotional morning in a Marion County Courtroom. Cody Waggoner, 24, plead guilty to second degree murder in connection to the death of Bradley Powell.

After the hearing, Waggoner cried as he was taken away by deputies.

“I was happy to see him crying and knowing that he was upset. But I know that he was upset because he is in trouble, not because of what he did to Bradley. I have seen absolutely no remorse in this man,” said Sarah Powell, Bradley’s stepmother.

Waggoner admitted to killing Powell and was sentenced to 38 years. Powell’s stepmother and friends do not think that is enough.

“Obviously this is very emotional. We have a lot of people here in support of Bradley. We don’t agree with what was handed down,” Sarah Powell said.

“That is not okay and that is not justice,” said Harley Hudnall, Bradley’s friend.

Powell was reported missing in December of 2016 and his body was found on Waggoner’s family property in February of 2017. Waggoner was initially charged with first degree murder. His case was slated to go to trial on Tuesday.

Prosecutors outlined what they would have told jurors. They said Waggoner told his brother he shot and killed Powell and then buried his body.

Friends and family were thinking of Powell.

“Bradley needs to be remembered as a kind, gentle person. And his life was cut tragically short,” Sarah Powell said.

“He is the most easy going, funniest, best person you could ask for,” Hudnall said.

They wish the outcome was different.

“All we can do is pray and hold onto each other and just accept it,” Sarah Powell said.

The earliest Waggoner could be considered for parole is when he has served 85 percent of his sentence.

 

 

Categories: Featured, Hamilton County, Local News, Marion County, Walker County

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