Husband of slain ex-Mississippi lawmaker says she was targeted for seeking sister-in-law’s killer

Brandon Henley, Ashley’s wife and Kristina Jones’ sister, said he believes they were killed by the same person

The husband of a former Mississippi legislator who was fatally shot on the same property where her sister-in-law’s body was found has said he believes he was targeted for pushing for answers in his sister’s death. 

Brandon Henley offered up his theory in after his wife Ashley Henley’s body was discovered on Sunday on a property in Yalobusha County.

‘[His sister’s killer] knew that we were applying pressure and they were going to get rid of the pressure,’ Brandon Henley told the Fox13.  

Brandon and his wife Ashley believed his sister Kristina Jones was murdered in December. Her body was found in a burnt-out trailer, but her cause of death was ruled ‘unknown’ in May. 

Brandon said if law enforcement found out who killed his sister, then his wife would be alive today. 

‘I feel that if something would have been done sooner this would have never happened,’ Henley told WJTV on Monday, a day after his wife was shot dead.  

Police haven’t said if his wife and sister’s deaths were related, but Brandon believes the suspect is the same killer. 

‘I have my own theory and the police do too and he is a suspect and there was someone taken in for questioning apparently last night,’ Brandon told WJTV, but didn’t elaborate on who ‘he’ is.  

The Yalobusha County Sheriff’s Office declined to comment and referred questions to the county prosecutor, who didn’t return calls from  

Ashley Henley, 40

Kristina Jones

Ashley Henley (left) was found shot dead around 10pm on Sunday in rural Yalobusha County, Mississippi.  She and her husband Brandon had been trying to prove that Kristina Jones (right) had been murdered

The makeshift memorial for Kristina Jones, Brandon's sister, on the property where her body was found in December and Brandon's wife, Ashley, was killed this week

The makeshift memorial for Kristina Jones, Brandon’s sister, on the property where her body was found in December and Brandon’s wife, Ashley, was killed this week

Yalobusha County coroner Ronnie Stark told WMC-TV that Henley had been mowing grass

She was outside the burnt out trailer before she was killed

Yalobusha County coroner Ronnie Stark told WMC-TV that Henley had been mowing grass outside the burnt out trailer (pictured) where Jones was found dead 

Ashley – a Republican who served in the state House from January 2016 to January 2020 – described a hostile run in with Yalobusha County deputies from the sheriff’s office in an April 6 Facebook post. 

She said two deputies ‘attempted to intimidate me’ and ‘threatened to arrest me for refusing to allow them to take my lawfully holstered, concealed firearm without probable cause.’ 

‘We have been silent long enough,’ Ashley said in the Facebook post. 

‘For the past three months my family has held ourselves close, grieving in secret, to cooperate with the requests of the Yalobusha County Sheriff’s Department as they proclaimed to be working on the investigation into the murder of my sister-in-law, which occurred at approximately 1:30AM on December 26th, 2020. 

‘We have been nice. We have cooperated. We have respected the process and been patient … NOW, we demand answers. We will not be intimidated. We are not going away. We will not back down. We will not be silent any longer. My sister-in-law deserves #JUSTICE.’

In a May 24 Facebook entry, Ashley posted a picture of her sister-in-law’s death certificate that listed the cause of death as ‘unknown’ and manner of death as ‘undetermined.’

‘ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE – My family waited 5 months for this?!’ she wrote. 

Ashely's April 6 Facebook post and May 20 update

Ashely’s April 6 Facebook post and May 20 update 

On June 13, Ashley is believed to have been cutting the lawn outside the burnt-out trailer when she was shot in the back of the head. 

During the Fox13 interview, Brandon vowed not to back down. 

‘You don’t go after women. You don’t go after innocent people. It’s disgusting, he told Fox13. ‘You took a mother from a 15-year-old boy, a daughter, and another mother and then you’re scared you are going to take someone else from another family.’ 

Six months after burying his sister, Brandon is preparing final arrangements for his wife.  

Ashley’s colleagues put together a memorial tribute on Facebook and set up a GoFundMe

Republican state Rep. Dan Eubanks of DeSoto County, Mississippi, who set up the online fundraiser, wrote in a Facebook post on Monday that he was heartbroken and angry about Henley’s death. 

 ‘What an absolute loss to our state, county, me personally, and most importantly her dear family,’ he said. ‘Please pray for her husband and son and their extended family… and that God’s justice will be served on those responsible.’

 The DeSoto County Republican Party honored Ashley in a Facebook post, calling her a ‘dedicated public servant’ and tagging Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch.  

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