Former deputy accused of murder appears in court

Chris Jones
Chris Jones

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Emotions ran high in court Tuesday as a former Shelby County Sheriff's Deputy accused of murder appeared in court.

Chris Jones, in jail on $500,000 bond for the murder of Windjammer restaurant employee D.J Munsey, recently saw charges against him raised from second degree murder to first degree murder.

Sitting quietly in the back of the courtroom Tuesday, Munsey's girlfriend, Stacie Harris, watched the former deputy walk into court.

"Makes me want to puke to be honest with you," she said. "It disgusts me."

Harris was pleased that charges against Jones were raised as she described his words on the night of the murder.

"He went outside, came back in, and was already talking about killing somebody," she said.  "To me, that's pre-meditated.  So maybe justice is getting done."

Jones' attorney, Leslie Ballin, quickly came to his client's defense.

"If there's a side of the story consistent with his guilt, let me emphasize that there is a side of the story consistent with his innocence," Ballin said.

Originally, Jones pleaded not guilty, and while the charges changed, Jones' plea has not.

Ballin asked family members for patience.

"They are entitled to their emotions, and I understand it, but the court system needs to take care of this case," he said.

Jones is scheduled to appear in court again next Wednesday. Ballin said he would argue that, because Jones does not face the death penalty, he should get an affordable bond while he waits for trial.

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