Monday, October 3, 2016

"Murder in Rural Hill" Details 106 Year Old Murder Case in Winston County

106 years ago, a horrific murder took place in Winston County that remains unsolved to this date.

That murder and the events that happened afterwards have been a source of speculation and rumor ever since. Over time, the truth and actual events have been lost in a mix of embellishment and forgotten details.  Many people in Winston and Attala County know the death of Miss Janie Sharp only as a ghost story that often surfaces on Halloween.

Local businessman, William McCully became interested in the tale in 2010 when the people of western Winston County (Rural Hill and Center Ridge communities) acknowledged the 100th anniversary of her death. With some research, it became obvious that the real story of her murder and the following events had never fully been told and were much more interesting than a simple ghost story. McCully has recently released his first book, “Murder in Rural Hill” that examines the case in detail from beginning to end.

Said McCully, “Most people don’t know much about the events that occurred from 1910 to 1913 relating to this case. Over the years it simply became a good ghost tale but the true story is much more fascinating. Most have forgotten that there were two additional murders related to the case that were never solved and that the event brought national attention leading to a trial which is still regarded as one of the most famous in Mississippi history.”

“Murder in Rural Hill” seeks to expose the facts of the case without speculation. Beginning on the
day of Janie Sharp’s murder, the book follows the events to the second trial of young Swinton Permenter and its aftermath – including the brutal murders of the detective involved in the case and the brother of the defendant. None of the murders have ever been solved.


“Murder in Rural Hill” is available on Amazon in paperback form and as a Kindle version. It is also available locally at several retailers, the Winston County Library where a portion of the proceeds are donated to the library and at the offices of WinstonWebNews located at 116 South Columbus in Louisville. A book signing is scheduled on October 11 at the Winston County Library from 11:30 am till 1:30 pm.