Accomplice in Hancock Bank robbery sentenced

Published 8:25 am Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Austin Lee Boykin, 33, of Gulfport, has been sentenced in the Hancock Whitney Bank robbery that occurred at the Prentiss branch in May 2021.

Austin was charged in June 2021 with accessory after the fact to armed robbery. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 12 years by Judge Brad Touchstone.

Austin Boykin dropped his cousin, Eric, off at the bank and then traveled to the Jeffersonian Motor Inn where he parked as the get-away driver. Eric never made it to the Jeffersonian and ended up escaping through the woods and was apprehended behind the Department of Human Services building just south of the Jeffersonian.  After a two-day trial in October 2022, Eric was found guilty of two counts of armed robbery and one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He was found not guilty of one count of armed robbery. Boykin’s prior charge was for possession of a controlled substance out of Gulfport. Eric was sentenced to life in prison by Judge Tony Mozingo.

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According to Prentiss Police Chief Richard Browning, there was overwhelming evidence against both Boykins. “Austin was smart to take the 12 years, otherwise he could have received life in prison,” said Browning.

“I believe justice was served.”

The FBI, MDOC, Marion County K-9 unit, Marion County Sheriff’s Office and the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office assisted the Prentiss Police Department and Jefferson Davis County Sheriff’s Department in the search the day of the robbery.

“I appreciate all the agencies that assisted on the day of the bank robbery, and I commend the District Attorney’s Office and Chip Lewis in their professionalism to make this case a win.”