Man arrested in execution-style killing of cousins convicted in 20 other crimes

Russell McNeal was out on parole for another crime when he killed Shawn Collier and Michael Wigfall execution-style, investigators said.

“Our hearts are empty,” said Collier’s sister, Rebecca Mahoney.

Mahoney has honored the two by wearing a sweatshirt with their photos on it.

“You could see a struggle, and when you see the struggle, they had no way -- there was no way out,” aunt Charlotte Pinkerton said.

Earlier this week, police arrested McNeal and charged him in the double killing.

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When Fernandes got the tip that McNeal is a convicted felon, she went to the DeKalb County Courthouse to learn more about his record.

Documents she found said McNeal had been convicted of 20 crimes in DeKalb County, and was out on parole when police say he killed the men.

In October 2015, a judge sentenced him to 10 years in prison for four different violent crimes. He was supposed to serve four years, but he was released after only three.

“It’s just, like, how could they allow that person to be out?” Mahoney said.

“I think the system is broken and I’m not sure why this man was out,” Pinkerton said.

The women said those are questions a parole board needs to answer.

“If It wasn’t our family, it would’ve been someone else’s, but it just happened to be ours,” Mahoney said.

McNeal is currently being held in the Dekalb County Jail with no bond.

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