Verdict stirs up strong feelings for Sikeston families - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Verdict stirs up strong feelings for Sikeston families

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Brianna Branson was charged with the murder of Kendra Gray. Brianna Branson was charged with the murder of Kendra Gray.
Police say Branson hit gray with a truck outside an underage drinking party in 2010. Police say Branson hit gray with a truck outside an underage drinking party in 2010.
King says her fight is only just beginning. King says her fight is only just beginning.
Gilmore says Brianna Branson is now doing her best to move on. Gilmore says Brianna Branson is now doing her best to move on.
SIKESTON, MO (KFVS) -

It's a case that may always stir up strong emotions for two families in Sikeston.

There's reaction from both sides after a judge finds a teenage girl not guilty of murder.

Brianna Branson was charged with the murder of Kendra Gray. Police say Branson hit Gray with a truck outside an underage drinking party in 2010.

"He just dismissed a murder for God's sake that everybody knew is a murder," said Carol King, Kendra's mother. "I plan on still fighting until I exhaust every resource possible that I can through the system."

A judge acquitted Branson on all charges Kendra Gray's family says they are left with no closure and no justice.

"There was no justice what so ever," said Carol King. "No justice, none at all."

At her daughter's grave site, Carol King reflected on a verdict that's brought her no closure.

"I want someone to pay for what they have done for her," said King.

While the judge explained to the crowded courtroom the evidence just wasn't there, the Gray family feels Branson knew exactly what she was doing.

"To me he just excused her death as it was okay for Brianna to run over Kendra," said King.

Kendra's brother Bobby Gray says the case has destroyed their family.

"I will never believe in the justice system for as long as I live," he said. "My dad is in prison for 15 years for drugs, but this girl killed my little sister and she's out walking on the streets."

The Gray family feels lawyers and the judge were too close.

George Gilmore, Branson's attorney says to suggest the case was handled in anything but a professional manner is ridiculous. He says gray's death was a tragedy and an accident.

"It wasn't intentional, it wasn't criminally negligent," said Gilmore. 

Gilmore says this may be a case where nobody really wins and Branson is trying to move on.

"Well she's elated but at the same time she just broke down when the judge announced his verdict," Gilmore said. 

As for the Grays, Kendra's mother Carol says she won't rest until she finds some kind of justice for her daughter, and a way for her name to live on with purpose.

"I'm gonna be her voice until I die I guess," said King.

Branson spent several weeks behind bars after the incident, but was later released.

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