Suspects in Hattiesburg police killings appear in court; officially charged

(HATTIESBURG, MS) – The four suspects accused in the killings of Hattiesburg officers Benjamin Deen and Liquori Tate appeared in court today. Judge Gay Polk-Payton presided over the court.

Curtis Banks, 26, appeared first. His brother is Marvin Banks. He was charged with 2 counts of accessory after the fact and given a $100,000 bond. He interrupted the judge as she was trying to administer the oath, but she firmly silenced him.

After the The DA revealed Banks was out on bond for possession of a controlled substance from July 2013, his bond was revoked. Banks says he hadn’t signed a book for 2 years because he was told the charges had been dismissed.

He was indicted for the 2013 charge and he can’t bond out until the prior charge has been cleared. Curtis Banks worked at Dairy Queen prior to his arrest.

Cornelius Clark, 28, appeared next. The judge had to read him the affidavit because Clark did not understand the charges against him. He was charged with obstruction of justice and hindering prosecution and given a $75,000 bond. Clark says he collects disability and does not work.

Joanie T. Calloway, 22, also known as Joanie T. Fairly, appeared third. She is the girlfriend of Marvin Banks. She was also read her charge because she claimed to not understand. The Affidavit says she knowingly helped Marvin Banks after the officers were shot and has been charged with 1 count of accessory after the fact. She was given a $75,000 bond.

Marvin Banks, 29, appeared last. According to reports, he stared at the police the entire time, including while the judge was speaking to him. He was charged with 2 counts of capital murder, 1 count of felony possession of a weapon, and grand theft auto. His bond was set at $100,000 for the weapon and grand larceny charge. His bond was denied for the capital murder charge. Banks did not have a job.

According to MBI, there is dash cam video of the shooting and the theft of the police cruiser. The video has not been released to the public.

The mother of the Banks brothers, Mary Smith, said her son Marvin was under the influence of synthetic marijuana during the shooting. MBI said toxicology reports for the suspects have not been completed.

Both men were shot in the line of duty while conducting a traffic stop on Saturday. One was shot in the face, and the other officer was shot in the back, according to The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation. They were wearing bullet proof vests, officials said.