- Associated Press - Friday, June 6, 2014

PICAYUNE, Miss. (AP) - Authorities said a sex offender wanted on a rape charge in Picayune has been found dead in a vehicle.

Pearl River County Chief Deputy Shane Tucker said the body of the 50-year-old Johnny Washington was found Wednesday night in Picayune.

Police Chief Bryan Dawsey said the rape for which Washington was being sought allegedly involved a 14-year-old girl.

Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy Shane Tucker said the department received a call from family members, who found Washington in the vehicle. Tucker said the vehicle matched the description of the suspect vehicle wanted by the Picayune Police Department.

Patrol deputies and investigators arrived on the scene where they determined Washington had been deceased for some

County Coroner Derek Turnage said it appeared Washington had dead for three and four days. A toxicology report is expected to be able to determine the cause and manner of death, Turnage said.

Washington was convicted on two counts of statutory rape in 2000 in Pearl River County

Mississippi Department of Corrections spokeswoman Grace Fisher said MDOC issued a warrant for Washington for violation of the terms of his probation after Picayune police began looking for him.

Fisher said Washington had to register as a sex offender after his conviction on Dec. 15, 2000, where he was sentenced to 30 years for two separate counts of statutory rape and an additional six months for an assault that took place in February of 2000.

Fisher said the two 30-year sentences were to run concurrently.. Upon his release, he was to serve five years of probation.

Fisher said 20 years of Washington’s sentence was suspended leaving him with 10 years and six months to serve.

Washington was released from jail on probation on June 7, 2010, Fisher said.

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