Welford Levi “Pork Chop” McCarty was found guilty of capital murder and desecration of a human corpse by a Greene County jury Thursday.
He will serve life without parole plus three years on the desecration conviction. He was not eligible for the death penalty because his IQ was too low to include that penalty.
Closing arguments were completed late Wednesday in the murder trial of the alleged gang member.
McCarty, 37, was charged in the January 2013 killing of Donovan Cowart, 27.
“I commend the joint effort and cooperation between the Greene County Sheriff’s Department, George County Sheriff’s Department and the FBI Safe Streets Task Force,” said Assistant District Attorney Bill Barret. “These agencies worked for the last four years to locate Donovan Cowart and to determine who killed him.”
Authorities contend McCarty shot Cowart in the face from 10 yards away, as Cowart stood over his own makeshift grave.
Prosecutors said in court that McCarty killed Cowart because Cowart was working as an informant for the police. Cowart was killed some time between Jan. 13, 2013 and March 20, 2013. His body was not discovered until May 2015.
On Tuesday, witnesses in the trial said McCarty wanted Cowart dead because he suspected his former friend had become a snitch. McCarty is accused of being a member of both the Southern Brotherhood and Simon City Royals gangs.
“There were so many issues in this case that the jury couldn’t hear because of our rules of evidence,” said District Attorney Tony Lawrence. “I am proud that the jury took the time to listen to, analyze and deliberate on the evidence that was presented in this case.
“The death of Donovan Cowart was another sad chapter in showing those who are on drugs and in gangs commit acts of violence against others in our community. The family has waited four years to find out what happened to Donovan Cowart and while I know this won’t bring him back, I hope it will give them some peace that the justice system worked in holding McCarty accountable for Donovan’s death.”