Vicksburg Kiwanis Club hosts Southerland for talk on crime

Published 4:47 pm Friday, September 8, 2023

Branon Southerland was the guest speaker for the Vicksburg Kiwanis Club meeting on Sept. 5.

Southerland is an Assistant District Attorney in the 9th Circuit District. His office handles approximately 500 cases per year and had 15 jury trials in 2022.

Southerland pointed out the difficulties in bringing a conviction to fruition, saying law enforcement as well as the District Attorney’s office often find it difficult to get victims to testify against people who use violence in the perpetration of crimes. He also cited delays in getting autopsies and drug data from the state crime lab and health board as a major issue as it sometimes takes 1-2 years to get the evidence required for prosecuting.

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Southerland pointed out that even though there are difficulties in seeking convictions, of all the 82 counties in Mississippi, Warren County ranks in the top tier in conviction rate.