Dispute over pets leads to murder charge against East Tennessee man

SWEETWATER, Tenn. — An East Tennessee man is accused of fatally shooting another man after an argument broke out about pets, authorities said.

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Austin Jubril Sanders, of Sweetwater, was charged with first-degree murder, according to Monroe County Sheriff’s Office online booking records. Sanders is accused of fatally shooting William Franklin 49, of Sweetwater on Saturday, The Advocate & Democrat of Madisonville reported.

According to a news release from the Sweetwater Police Department, officers responded to a call about a shooting at 5:33 p.m. EST. Two minutes later, officers found Ferguson suffering from a gunshot wound to his face, The Advocate & Democrat reported.

Ferguson died at the scene despite lifesaving efforts from first responders, the newspaper reported.

According to the news release, Sanders told police that an argument over pets had occurred between his grandmother and Ferguson. Police said Sanders retrieved a weapon from the home and shot Ferguson, according to The Advocate & Democrat.

Sanders is being held without bail at the Monroe County Jail, according to online booking records. He is scheduled to appear in court on Jan. 24.