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Verdict reached in Lee Co. murder trial

Published: Jun. 25, 2021 at 2:53 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 25, 2021 at 5:59 PM EDT
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LEESBURG, Ga. (WALB) - A verdict was reached in a Lee County murder trial Friday afternoon.

Matthew Hunter, 23, was found guilty of felony murder as it relates to voluntary manslaughter and aggravated battery in connection to the death of Jeffrey Potter, 51.

Hunter was found not guilty of malice murder.

Hunter was sentenced to 20 years, five of which will be served on probation.

Judge W. James Sizemore said this sentence falls in line with the state’s recommendations.

“As for the defendant, he’s a young man. Fortunately, this verdict is going to allow him at some point to have a life with his family and even his child, but the case is also about justice for the victim,” Sizemore said.

Sizemore said this was a horrific crime and believes this sentence is the appropriate one.

“You’re a young man. This hurts. This is not something I take any pleasure in doing but you will have the ability to get this done and redeem yourself, serve the sentence that I believe you deserve and then go on and have a productive life and I sure hope you do. To the Potter family, I’m very sorry for what you’re enduring and have to continue to endure and this will not bring your son and brother back but it is justice,” said Sizemore.

Sizemore said he hopes this helps heal both families.

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