Jury Finds Defendant In October Shooting Guilty Of Manslaughter
A man accused of murder by Calhoun County Prosecutors has received a lighter conviction from the jury.
The Battle Creek Enquirer reports that Friday afternoon, 27-year-old James Hatfield was found guilty of manslaughter in the shooting death of 48-year-old Kelvin Pratcher; he was also convicted of weapons charges. The jury took almost 9 hours to reach the verdict, with the judge almost sending them home for the weekend after they reported they were deadlocked.
Hatfield was arrested last October, a few minutes after the victim was shot and killed on Cherry St. in Battle Creek; witnesses for the prosecution said that the two had been arguing when Hatfield pulled out a gun and fatally shot Pratcher, while the defense argued there wasn’t enough proof to convict Hatfield of murder.
For the manslaughter charge, Hatfield faces up to 15 years in prison at sentencing.