Reuben Fairfield

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Man Enters Guilty Plea in Hammer Beating Case

By news@wbbjtv.com

JACKSON, Tenn. - A Jackson man will spend 35 years in jail after pleading guilty to killing Lionel Harris in February 2011.

According to Jackson police, Reuben Fairfield, 27, entered the plea as a part of a negotiated deal. Fairfield plead guilty to second degree murder and tampering with evidence. He received an enhanced punishment of 35 years for the murder and six years for tampering with evidence. Those sentences are concurrent for a total effective sentence of 35 years in prison with no parole.

Fairfield was accused of killing Lionel Harris, who was originally from Marion, Arkansas, on February 7, 2011. Police investigators reported finding Harris dead from head trauma in the parking lot of a business in the 900 block of North Highland Avenue.

Investigators found that Fairfield was Harris' girlfriend's brother. Shortly before his murder, Harris, 27, had left Fairfield's home on West Grand Avenue and walked to a bus stop on the 1000 block of North Highland to catch the bus home.

Police said Fairfield went to the bus stop, armed with a hammer, with the intent of confronting Harris about a matter concerning a family member. Fairfield reportedly chased Harris across North Highland. Harris tried to escape by going inside the business at 931 North Highland, but the door was locked. Police said Fairfield then struck Harris several times in the head with a hammer, killing him.

Fairfield will continue to be held at the Madison County jail, without bond, until he's transferred to the Tennessee Department of Corrections.

The plea deal was approved by Lionel Harris' parents.
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