Darnell Hartsfield found guilty in 1983 Kilgore KFC slayings - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Darnell Hartsfield found guilty in 1983 Kilgore KFC slayings

Darnell Hartsfield Darnell Hartsfield

A jury has found Darnell Hartsfield guilty of the slayings of five people abducted from the Kilgore Kentucky Fried Chicken after a prosecutor today described the crime as "one big, long armed robbery that turned very, very bad."

The trial will now move to the sentencing phase. The 47 year old Hartsfield, of Tyler, faces life in prison for one of the longest unresolved mass murder cases in Texas.

The infamous case has perplexed investigators since 1983. That's when the five victims were taken from the KFC store in Kilgore during an apparent robbery, driven about 15 miles to a remote oilfield road and fatally shot. Their bodies were found the next morning.

The five victims are Opie Ann Hughes, Monty Landers, Mary Tyler, Joey Johnson, and David Maxwell.

This trial comes nearly one year after Hartsfield's cousin, Romeo Pinkerton of Tyler, pleaded guilty in the case and accepted a sentence of life in prison.

Cathryn Khalil, reporting. ckhalil@kltv.com

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