published Monday, February 4th, 2013

Man pleads guilty in Sharpton killing in Tullahoma

The man accused of raping and murdering Tullahoma, Tenn., nursing student Megan Sharpton last summer pleaded guilty today in Franklin County Circuit Court.

Donnie Jones Jr. pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and agreed to accept a sentence of life in prison without parole, Franklin County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Chris Guess said.

The 24-year-old Sharpton’s body was still burning when a passing motorist spotted what was first thought to be a grass fire on Awalt Road near the bridge over Tims Ford Lake on July 2, 2012.

Jones’ plea ends a seven-month investigation by the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, Bedford County Sheriff’s Office, Coffee County Sheriff's Office and the Tullahoma Police Department.

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