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Guyton woman pleads guilty to 2010 manslaughter charge
McDaniel Kendra
Kendra McDaniel pled guilty to voluntary manslaughter for the September 2010 killing of her boyfriend 26-year-old Jonathan Sheffield, of Sylvania.

A woman charged with killing her boyfriend last year pled guilty Wednesday to voluntary manslaughter, but her mother, also charged in the death, could possibly face a jury trial.

Kendra McDaniel and her mother, Katherine Lynn Hodges, 37, were both arrested on murder charges after the Sept. 4, 2010, shooting death of McDaniel’s boyfriend, 26-year-old Jonathan Sheffield, of Sylvania.

Ogeechee Judicial Circuit Superior Court Judge Gates Peed sentenced McDaniel to 20 years in prison — 15 years to serve and five years on probation. McDaniel originally was charged with murder, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a first offender, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, terroristic threats, and giving a false statement. As part of a plea bargain she admitted guilt to the lesser charge, said Ogeechee Judicial Circuit Assistant District Attorney Michael Muldrew.

While McDaniel entered a plea, Hodges did not reach an agreement with prosecutors, Muldrew said. Jury selection for the case could begin soon, he said.

Hodges is charged with murder, aggravated assault, giving a false statement and obstruction.

Bulloch County Sheriff’s deputies responded to Hodges’ home Sept. 6, 2010, to what was reported originally as an accidental shooting. However, evidence led investigators to believe Sheffield’s death was not accidental.

Responding deputies found Sheffield lying in the yard, suffering from a gunshot wound. Bulloch County EMS rushed Sheffield to East Georgia Regional Medical Center. He was later airlifted to Memorial Health University Medical Center in Savannah, where he died of his wounds a short time after arrival.

An autopsy called Sheffield’s death a homicide. Evidence gathered by investigators also determined that the story of the shooting being accidental was not true, Bulloch County Sheriff Lynn Anderson said.

Investigator Bill Black and other Bulloch County Sheriff’s investigators and deputies conducted follow-up investigations, including interviews and serving a search warrant, and later secured an arrest warrant.

Muldrew said investigations revealed an argument between McDaniel and Sheffield began elsewhere and continued at Hodges’ home, and during the altercation, Hodges “hit him on the head with a metal pipe” and McDaniel shot him.

Hodges was taken into custody Sept. 9, but a day-long manhunt ensued before officers arrested McDaniel in Effingham on Sept. 10.