10-Year Prison Sentence for Wicomico County Man Found Guilty of - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

10-Year Prison Sentence for Wicomico County Man Found Guilty of Manslaughter

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William Blan Harcum III William Blan Harcum III

SALISBURY, Md.- It is 10 years behind bars for a Wicomico County man who killed his uncle in a watermelon field last year. 

William Blan Harcum III, 31, was sentenced Friday morning for voluntary manslaughter. 

A Wicomico County Circuit Court jury in March found Harcum guilty of killing his uncle, 62-year-old Lee P. Harcum, with a tractor pin last July in the family's watermelon fields on the 10000 block of Snethen Church Road in Mardela. 

According to testimony at his trial, William Harcum and his uncle were picking watermelons with a handful of other workers when the two men began to argue with one another and the argument got heated. Lee Harcum then hit his nephew in the back of the head with a watermelon, knocking him unconscious, according to witness testimony.

When William Harcum came too, Lee Harcum proceeded to start fighting with his nephew.  Witnesses said the two exchanged punches and eventually began wrestling on the ground.  The other workers broke up the fight and told the two men to leave for the day.

William Harcum, who took the stand in his own defense, said when the two men were separated, his uncle told him, "You're a dead man." William Harcum told the jury he was fearful for his life because his uncle kept a loaded gun in his nearby pickup truck. William Harcum testified he got into his pickup truck, drove to a tractor and removed the tractor hitch pin. He then got back into his car and sped off in the direction of his uncle. He testified he then hit his uncle with the tractor pin with the intention of knocking him unconscious and not killing him.

During Friday's sentencing, William Harcum's attorney asked for five years in prison for his client. Before the sentence was handed out, William Harcum asked the judge to "not throw him in a cage." 

Both the state and Lee Harcum's family asked the judge for the maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, to which the judge agreed.

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