- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 31, 2018

MADISON, Miss. (AP) - A former Mississippi Court of Appeals judge has died after falling, hitting some rocks, and tumbling into a lake.

Local news outlets report 80-year-old James P. Brantley of Madison died Wednesday morning at his house at the Ross Barnett Reservoir.

Pearl River Valley Water Supply District Police Chief Perry Waggoner says Brantley was power washing his house when a railing broke and he fell. It wasn’t immediately clear if Waggoner died from head trauma, drowning, or something else.

Former Gov. Ronnie Musgrove appointed Brantley, a Walnut Grove native, to a Court of Appeals vacancy in 2001. Brantley lost his election bid to Kenny Griffis in 2002.

Before joining the court, Brantley was a lawyer for the state Senate and the Mississippi Department of Mental Health before going into private practice.

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