Man Charged in Death of Gay Mayoral Candidate

Politics likely not a factor in Marco McMillian's death, coroner says
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 1, 2013 8:34 AM CST
In this Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013 photo released by the Coahoma County (Miss.) Sheriff's Office, Lawrence Reed, 22, poses or a portrait.   (Miss.) Sheriff's Office)

(Newser) – Mississippi police have charged a 22-year-old man with killing openly gay Clarksdale mayoral candidate Marco McMillian, whose body was found by the Mississippi River on Wednesday. Police revealed that the suspect, Lawrence Reed, had been driving McMillian's SUV when it collided head-on with another car Tuesday morning. Reed and the driver of the other car were taken to different hospitals, with Reed requiring an airlift to a Memphis hospital, the Clarion-Ledger reports. McMillian wasn't in either vehicle; police believe Reed killed him late Monday night or early Tuesday.

So far, police haven't said what Reed's motive might have been, but the coroner tells USA Today that politics was likely not a factor. The coroner's office has said nothing so far on McMillian's cause of death—the autopsy has been conducted, but the office is waiting for the toxicology report to be completed, the AP reports. Reed, meanwhile, is in good condition in a Memphis hospital. He's been charged with murder, and the next step will likely be to have him extradited from Tennessee, NBC News reports. (Read more Lawrence Reed stories.)

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