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Lee County murder suspect former Russell County Sheriff's Office deputy

The Lee County man charged in connection with Tuesday's murder of Bryan Hurst of Smiths Station is a former Russell County Sheriff's Deputy.

Sheriff Tommy Boswell said Mike Britton, 57, was employed with his office from January 1992 to April 1994. Britton was a good officer who left the department for health reason, Boswell recalled.

Prior to his employment at the sheriff's office Britton worked for the Phenix City Police Department, the sheriff said.

Hurst, 32, was found about 11 a.m. CDT inside his mobile home at 899 Lee Road 292 after Britton called the Lee County Sheriff's Office. Britton, who also lives in the home with his daughter, told officers a shooting had occurred. When deputies arrived on the scene they found Hurst dead in the kitchen from a gunshot wound to the chest.

Investigators recovered a 20-gauge shotgun on the scene. Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones said evidence points to the shotgun as the weapon used.

After giving a statement to deputies, Britton was taken into custody and charged with murder. His bond was set Wednesday in court at $50,000.

The shooting is believed to be linked to an ongoing domestic issue, Jones said. Law enforcement officers responded to the Lee Road 292 home Monday about 9 p.m. when Britton called to report an assault that had allegedly taken place between Hurst and Britton's daughter. The two have a child together, Jones said. When police arrived that night, Hurst and Britton's daughter were gone.

Neighbor Michael Moyer said he attended Smith's Station High School Britton's son, Jimmy Britton. Moyer said he didn't know the Britton's well, but he's never had a problem with them. He said he was surprised when he heard about the shooting, but doesn't consider his neighborhood to be a dangerous place to live.

The murder investigation is ongoing, however no other arrests are expected, Jones said.

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