Three arraigned in 'Facebook murders'

POSTED: 6:00 PM Sep 13 2013   UPDATED: 12:39 PM Sep 13 2013
Johnson County murder
MOUNTAIN CITY, Tenn. -

Three people police say were involved in a murder in Johnson County were arraigned in court Friday.

The families of the victims were there and they tell us today's court appearance is one step closer to justice.

The courtroom in Mountain City was filled with emotion as Barbara and Jenelle Potter and Jamie Lynn Curd were arraigned for the murder of a Johnson County mother and father. The three are facing two counts of first degree murder and one count of conspiracy to commit murder.

Beverly Garland is the mother of Billy Payne, Jr., one of the victims and was in the courtroom.

"It meant a lot to see them in handcuffs finally," said Janie Hayworth, sister of Billie Jean Hayworth, the other victim.

The three are accused of the 2012 killings of Payne and Hayworth. "We love those kids and we miss them every day," Garland told us."It's not getting any easier. They say time heals, but it never heals."

Garland tells us seeing these three in court is the beginning of justice. "I feel like justice is really turning where it needs to be," she said.

In January 2012, officers say Marvin Potter got angry after Billy Payne, Jr. and Billie Jean Hayworth deleted his adult daughter, Jenelle Potter, from their Facebook accounts. Payne and Hayworth were found shot to death in their Mountain City home. Their six-month-old son Tyler was found unharmed, partially under his mother's body.

"Why would they go in there and kill my sister and her boyfriend the way they did?" asked Janie Hayworth.

On Friday the court set a date to see if the three will be tried together or if they'll stand trial separately. Either way, all the families of the victims want is justice. "That they are found guilty and at least spend the rest of their life in prison [would be enough for me]," said Garland.

Here are the facts on what's next -- on October 29, a judge will decide if the Potters and Jamie Lynn Curd will stand trial together, then set a court date.

If they're tried separately, Barbara and Jenelle's trial is May 12 and Curd's trial is December 9.

Marvin Potter is also charged in this case with first degree murder and felony murder. Potter's trial is set for October 7.