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A former Mississippi legislator—who had publicly stated that she believed her sister-in-law was murdered in December in an unsolved case—was found shot to death at the same property Sunday.
The body of former state Rep. Ashley Henley, 40, was discovered around 10 p.m. Sunday night at the site of a burned-out trailer where her sister-in-law Kristina Michelle Jones was found dead on Dec. 27, according to Mississippi Today.
Assistant District Attorney Steven Jubera told the news outlet that Henley had been shot, but declined to provide further details citing the ongoing investigation.
Henley’s husband, Brandon Henley—who is also Jones’ brother—told local station WREG that his wife had been shot in the back of the head while doing yard work at the property around 2 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.
He believes the same person is likely responsible for both deaths.
“I feel that if something would have been done sooner this would have never happened,” Brandon told the outlet of his sister’s still unsolved case.
According to Brandon, his family had started to take a new look into Jones’ death just days before his wife’s killing after he said fire investigators determined that a December blaze at a trailer home on the property had been arson.
Jones' body was discovered inside the charred trailer.
Yalobusha County Coroner Ronnie Stark told the Mississippi Free Press that the cause of death in that case was still pending, although homicide has not been ruled out.
Brandon told WREG that the crime lab “did confirm that there was no smoke in her lungs when she was found, so she was dead before the fire,” he said.
Jubera told WREG that investigators have not ruled out the possibility that the two deaths could be connected.
“As a matter of timing and location, obviously what happened to Ashley is very suspect,” he said.
Ashley—who served as a state representative from 2016 to 2020—had been vocal about her belief that Jones’ had been murdered in the months before her death.
In April, she criticized the investigation into Jones’ death on social media and wrote in a post on Facebook that her family had been “silent long enough” while they waited for answers.
“We have been nice. We have cooperated. We have respected the process and been patient. However, we simply do not understand why, according to the Mississippi State Crime Lab, the Yalobusha County Coroner Ronnie Stark has not even requested a toxicology report,” she wrote. “NOW. . . we demand answers. We will not be intimidated. We are not going away. We will not back down. We will not be silent any longer. My sister-in-law deserves #JUSTICE.”
She accompanied the post with a photo of a makeshift memorial for Jones with the words “I was murdered.”
Then just last month, she took to Facebook again to post a photo of Jones’ death certificate, which listed the cause of death as “unknown” and the manner of death as “undetermined.”
“ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE,” she wrote. “My family waited 5 months for this?!”
Ashley once again pledged to find justice for Jones, who she said had been a “murder” victim.
“You may think this is over and your job is done, but you are mistaken,” she wrote. “This is only the beginning. I will leave no stone unturned in my pursuit of truth.”
After her death on Sunday, Brandon said he is now hoping to find justice for both his wife and sister.
“I have my own theory and the police do too and he is a suspect and there was someone taken in for questioning apparently last night,” he told WREG.
The family, including Ashley’s 15-year-old son, is still reeling from their latest loss.
“I’d like for them to do their job because this is the second person someone down there has taken from me,” Brandon said of investigators. “My son doesn’t have a mother.”
The Yalobusha County Sheriff’s Office declined to comment about the cases to Oxygen.com.
Oxygen.com also reached out to the county coroner and district attorney’s office, but did not receive an immediate response.
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