A mistrial was declared Wednesday in the murder trial of a Lexington woman accused of fatally shooting her mother near Booneville, Miss., in 2010, authorities said.
Officials with the Mississippi District 1 District Attorney’s Office said Prentiss County Circuit Judge Seth Pounds issued the mistrial after Rebecca Jones was unable to be in court Wednesday morning.
Jones’ attorney, Robert Laher, of Tupelo, Miss., said his client was admitted to Eliza Coffee Memorial Hospital in Florence.
“She is in the critical care unit at ECM,” Laher said. “I was there (Wednesday morning) and she is unresponsive and has been since she was taken to the hospital.
“At this point, we don’t know the nature or the severity of her condition.”
Jones, 48, 1551 Lauderdale 450, Lexington, which is near the Center Hill community, is charged in connection with the May 11 shooting death of her mother, Jane Jones, 66, according to Prentiss County Sheriff Randy Tolar.
Laher said Jones was in Lexington on Tuesday night when she became ill.
“Her fiancé reported to me she had some stomach issues and had taken some medicine,” Laher said.
Courthouse officials said Jones was taken by ambulance to ECM after being found unresponsive in her bathroom early Wednesday.
After declaring a mistrial, Pounds ordered a warrant issued for Jones’ arrest as soon as she is released from the hospital.
Testimony in the murder trial began Tuesday. Laher said he expected the state to rest its case Wednesday.
“She has maintained her innocence, and we were hoping to start our case (Wednesday afternoon) and hopefully have the case resolved by Thursday,” Laher said.
He said he doesn’t know when the case could be set for retrial.
“We don’t know if it will be resolved or if there will be another trial,” Laher said. “A lot of it depends on her health. A trial of this kind is very stressful. I don’t know if she would be strong enough to withstand another trial.”
Authorities said Jones is accused of shooting her mother once in the stomach and once in the upper right arm with a .38-caliber pistol after the two argued at Jane Jones’ house. She died later at the hospital.
Tom Smith can be reached at 256-740-5757 or tom.smith@TimesDaily.com.