Man Not Guilty in Son-in-Law's Murder - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Man Not Guilty in Son-in-Law's Murder

LEE COUNTY, AL (WXTX) - A father accused of murdering his son-in-law is a free man. Thursday a Lee County jury found Michael Britton, a former Russell County corrections officer not guilty

Michael Britton got a pat on the back from his attorney after learning he will not go to prison for shooting his son in law, Bryan Hurst, last year. After the verdict was read, Britton gave an exclusive interview to Fox 54.

"I'm relived, elated, I'd like to that my lawyer, he did a heck of a job," he said.

During the trial, the jury heard testimony that Hurst and his wife, Britton's daughter had a violent relationship, complicated by their drug use.

"Drugs destroyed my family," Britton told us.

Britton took the stand and admitted he shot Hurst the day after his daughter was severely beaten by Hurst. The prosecution said Britton took the law into his own hands. Britton testified he shot in self-defense. The jury agreed with Britton. Britton says he is still haunted by the day he pulled the trigger.

"I relive it everyday, at least 10 to 20 times a day I wake up in the middle of the night I knew him for seven maybe eight years. I'll probably never put it completely behind me," Britton said.

Britton said he's in the process of legally adopting their three young grandchildren, two of whom will never see their father, Bryan Hurst again. We asked Mr. Britton how he explained to his grandchildren that he was the one who killed their father, in self defense.

"The baby is to young to know, already told the four year old, he sometimes gets mad at me. The seven year old, we just have to take it one day at a time and do the best we can. It'll be rough but all they need to know is that granddaddy and grandma love them dearly and we will do everything we can to take care of them," he said.

The jury took about four hours to reach the not guilty verdict. Britton said now that the trial is over, his focus is on his grandchildren.

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