Franklin man sentenced for voluntary manslaughter

Published 9:41 pm Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Tremayne Cassell Pope


A Franklin man was sentenced to five years imprisonment for the voluntary manslaughter of Sean Antron Butts. Tremayne Cassell Pope faced Judge Matthew Glassman in Southampton County Circuit Court on Monday.

The shooting death took place on Sept. 30, 2018. Responding to a call at 9:50 p.m., the Franklin Police had found the victim in an apartment at the 300 block of South High Street. Butts, 38, had a gunshot wound to his head. He was airlifted to an area trauma hospital with life-threatening injuries, but later died.

On Oct. 15, Pope had been identified as a suspect and was initially charged with unlawful wounding, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, discharge of a firearm resulting in injury and discharging a firearm in an occupied building. But with the death, the charge of second-degree murder was added.

The trial took place on July 9, with the defendant making a plea agreement, which reduced the charge. As a result, on Monday, Pope got eight years with three suspended. The Commonwealth’s Attorney reportedly asked for more years. For the charge of unlawful shooting, the judge sentenced him to two more years, but suspended them. Three years probation will follow on Pope’s release. The charges of using a firearm in a felony and reckless handling of a gun were not prosecuted.