Mother, Son Arrested In Double Murder - - Jackson, MS

Jackson 11/08/06

Mother, Son Arrested In Double Murder

By Andrew Hasbun

Investigators say a Jackson mother and her son are both involved in the Friday murder of a Belhaven couple.  The arrests were made Wednesday morning, and the motive surprised everyone.

The discovery was puzzling.  Friday night, a passing motorist found two bodies inside a car left running in the middle of a rural Hinds County road

Cyrus Brunner, 33, and Nora Lee Acuna, 42, were both shot multiple times. Authorities assumed it was the usual culprit...drugs.

"We had it all figured out, and it wasn't a damn thing like what we thought," said Hinds County Sheriff Malcolm McMillin.

It turns out Cyrus Brunner was involved in small accident with Daniel Clayton, 18.  Instead of dealing with insurance, the sheriff says the two worked out a deal.

"They decided to settle the case between the two of them and worked out a time payment plan," said McMillin.

On Friday, the couple went to pick up the second payment, but something went wrong.  An argument began and the sheriff says Brunner made a comment about Clayton's mother Addie Clayton. 

Then Daniel Clayton opened fire, killing the couple as they sat in their car in the driveway of the Clayton's Livingston Rd. home. 

According to the sheriff, Clayton put the bodies on the passenger side seat and drove the car to Pocahontas.  His mother followed and picked up her son.  Addie Clayton, 52, is charged with accessory after the fact and Daniel is charged with two counts of murder.

"We are surprised as you are that these are the circumstances," said McMillin.

The sheriff credited two J.P.D. officers with helping solve this crime.  He says they followed up on a lead and informed the Sheriff's department. 

"This is something that really shows that cooperation, putting petty differences aside, can result in a successful completion of an investigation," said Jackson Police Chief Shirlene Anderson.

The sheriff says all that was owed to Brunner was a few hundred dollars. 

Cyrus Brunner was a Belhaven college baseball player.

The couple was originally from California.  Their families still live out west.

The Clayton's are being held at the Raymond Detention Center.

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