Clay native charged with extortion

Staff Writer

A 38-year-old Clay County native has been charged in Lowndes County with extortion.

And with an arrest and court record dating back to 2000 when he was 20, Thomas Yarnell Macon is no stranger to the court system.

According to the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Department, Macon apparently had previously extorted money from a person by threatening to expose what could be embarrassing information. In the latest case, Macon “was telling the victim if he did not get cash, that he was going to place some items on the Internet that would be of concern and harm to the victim,” Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Marc Miley said.

The victim contacted investigators who got involved and arrested Macon when he was picking up the money at the corner of Main and Ninth streets in Columbus.

Bond was set at $7,500 and the Mississippi Department of Corrections put a hold on him because he is on probation for previous felony convictions.

Macon, whose address is 1568 Hughes Road south of Columbus, was first arrested in March 2000 and charged with possession of stolen property after he was found with televisions, VCRs, jewelry, a microwave and other items reported missing by two different people.

He pleaded guilty in August 2000 and was given a three-year suspended sentence, fined $500 and ordered to pay $605 in restitution.

In August 2002, after he failed to meet the terms of his probation, his sentence was modified and he was sent to the Correction Department’s restitution center where he worked off his fines and court costs.

But in August 2003, his probation was revoked and he was sentenced to three years. He was released in May 2004.

His probation was revoked after he was arrested in June 2003 for selling and possessing cocaine.

On Aug. 25, 2005, he was sentenced to 13 years in prison and five years post release supervision. He also was fined $5,000.

After he got out, he was arrested in August 2012 for another parole violation and then again on July 4, 2013 for public drunkenness, littering and violating his probation.

In addition to having part of his post-release supervision revoked, Macon faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted of felony extortion.