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Update: Driskill Pleads Not Guilty to Killing Elderly Couple

(Lebanon, MO) -- The man charged with killing an elderly couple near Bennett Springs has pleaded not guilty to the brutal murders. An Ozarks sheriff says Driskill shouldn't have been on the streets to begin with.
(Lebanon, MO) -- The man charged with killing an elderly couple near Bennett Springs has pleaded not guilty to the brutal murders.

Jesse Driskill, 30, is charged with shooting and killing 82-year-old Johnnie and 76-year-old Coleen Wilson.

Documents also allege Driskill raped Coleen Wilson.

KOLR/KSFX's cameras were not allowed in the courtroom.

Driskill didn't show much emotion he looked around the courtroom a couple of times, pleaded not guilty, and was then led out.

Driskill is very familiar with courtrooms. The Hickory County Sheriff's Office says Driskill has been arrested 23 times for a number of felonies.

While those who knew the Wilson's cope with the loss, one sheriff is making it very clear this man should not have been walking the streets.

"He knows how to work the jail system," says Hickory County Sheriff Ray Tipton. He says Driskill has sat in his jail at least five times.

"He knows how to say things in the court," says Sheriff Tipton. "Of course, when he goes to drug treatment, he tells them he is doing great he should not have been out at all."

And Tipton says what's even more frustrating is that Driskill hasn't been serving full sentences for burglaries and assaults.

"What frustrates me about Driskill's case, plus other cases, is the lack of truth in sentencing. This particular subject, Driskill, [was] sentenced in March to four years back-to-back consecutive and he is out in 15 month, doing murders it looks like."

Driskill is now charged with murdering Coleen and Johnnie Wilson, shooting them -- even raping Coleen.

It's a crime that's unfathomable to those like Mary Hicks and her young daughter who quickly fell in love with love with the couple at their church.

"There's so much pain there and I think it's the way that this happened and the cruelty that's what's so hard," says Hicks.

Hicks says Coleen volunteered at the Friends of the Library and even made baby blankets for any woman she knew that was pregnant.

"They were good as gold," says Hicks.

With personalities that shined, a community mourns, while at the same time hoping Sheriff Tipton's concerns don't go unnoticed.

"I am not sure what will work, but pinching pennies at the state level does not do any good out here the good people need to be protected," he says.

Just before their deaths, the two were able to celebrate their 59th wedding anniversary at their church on Sunday with all who they loved and cared about.

Driskill's due back in court August 16, 2010.

Click here to watch Sheriff Tipton's full interview.

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