A murder suspect admitted to deputies he pulled the trigger, all because he believed the murder victim had molested his five-year-old daughter.
Andrew James Cody appeared before a judge for the first time Monday, charged with first degree murder.
Deputies say he told them he waited for 65 year-old Lee Britton in Britton's home off Shadow Lane in London in Pope County and then shot him once in the head.
Cody's supporters believe his actions were justified.
"He did me a favor, my little girl could have been the next victim," said Heather Shrives-Dornan.
Before a judge, a deputy recounted his interview with Cody just hours after the murder.
"He stated he went into the residence to confront Mr. Britton about molesting his daughter," said deputy Sgt. Stephen Pack.
Pope County Sheriff Aaron Duvall confirmed to KARK, Thursday they received allegations Lee Britton sexually abused a child.
But deputies say Friday, Cody put trash bags over his shoes to conceal evidence and put one shot into Britton's head.
"There's nothing I can say," Cody said in court, regarding his bond.
He was handed a half million dollar bond.
But outside the courtroom, his supporters were very vocal, saying they don't blame Cody one bit.
"I wish more daddies would stand up for their children like this, they should," said supporter Tara Laffoon.
Supporters of Lee Britton declined an on-camera interview, but soon, began a shouting match, calling out to Cody's supporters to prove the allegations of sexual abuse.
Deputies forced the crowd to break it up.
But people say as the case proceeds in court, they'll be back.
"This is what daddies have to do," Laffoon said.
While Cody's wife was originally arrested for being an accomplice to murder, the prosecutor says he won't be pursuing charges on her for now.
As of 4:00 p.m. Monday, Cody had not yet posted bond. His next court appearance is scheduled for July. ..Source.. by Lauren Trager, KARK 4 News
Sheriff's office received complaint on slain man
Pope County Sheriff Aaron DuVall confirmed Thursday the Pope County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) received a report late last week that a 65-year-old man who was killed Friday for allegedly molesting his accused murderer’s daughter had committed inappropriate acts with a child.
Fifth Judicial District Prosecutor David Gibbons said the initial complaint against Britton is being investigated further, but he and DuVall were unable to comment further, citing the ongoing investigation.
While Andrew James Cody, 26, has not yet been formally charged with first-degree murder, he admitted to killing Lee Britton in his home with a shotgun to police, according to testimony given by PCSO Investigator Stephen Pack at Cody’s bond hearing Monday.
Cody was arrested Friday about 30 minutes after PCSO received a report of a shotgun blast at a home on Shadow Lane, about two miles northwest of London. PCSO responded to Britton’s residence at 12:58 p.m. Friday and found Britton’s body in the kitchen. An investigation led police to believe Britton was killed by a shotgun blast to the head, according to Pack’s testimony.
Pack said Cody was arrested about two miles from the crime scene on U.S. Highway 64 approximately 30 minutes after Britton’s body was found. Pack said Cody was arrested and upon being interviewed, initially denied involvement in Britton’s death, but eventually changed his story and admitted to the charges.
Pack said Cody stated he entered Britton’s home with plastic bags wrapped around his feet and a long-sleeve shirt on “to cut down on blood splatter.” Cody waited inside the residence for Britton to return home, at which time he confronted the man.
“Once he came in, he confronted him with the shotgun and stated that he got pretty irritated and shot him in the head,” Pack said.
Pack said Cody admitted to shooting Britton in the left side of the head and then fled, dumping the plastic bags and his shirt in a nearby creek bed. Pack said Cody then hid the shotgun, and upon arrest, showed police where the gun was stored.
Pack said Cody stated he went inside the residence to confront Britton about molesting his daughter.
Britton’s body was turned over to Pope County Coroner Leonard Krout Friday to be transported to the Arkansas Medical Examiner’s office in Little Rock.
Cody was issued a $500,000 bond Monday by District Judge Don Bourne. He posted his bond and was released from police custody Tuesday evening.
Sheena Lakay Cody, 25, was arrested with Andrew Cody Friday on accomplice charges, but her charges were dropped by Monday morning
A Freedom of Information request to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) for Britton’s criminal history was not immediately returned Thursday; however, Britton’s name was not featured on several online sex offender registry websites. ..Source.. by Preston Tolliver
Trial begins for father accused of killing suspected child molester
RUSSELLVILLE (KATV) - Opening statements began Monday in the Pope County trial of a father accused of killing the man suspected of molesting his child.
Andrew Cody is accused of killing 65-year-old Lee Britton of London in May 2012. Cody told investigators he believed Britton had sexually abused his 5-year-old daughter.
A handful of people turned out to make their support for Cody clear on the first day of the trial.
Security is reportedly extremely high because of the sensitive and volatile nature of the trial. ..Source.. by KATV.com