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Fort Valley – A Fort Valley man pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter Monday in the Feb. 24, 2018, fatal shooting of another man at a Fort Valley apartment.

Corey Darnell McKinney Jr., 21, was sentenced to serve 20 years, with the first 12 years in prison, during a hearing in Peach County Superior Court. After his release from prison, McKinney must serve the balance of his sentence on probation.

If the case had gone to trial, prosecutor Neil Halvorson would have presented evidence showing:

Dalvin Kentrell Smith, 20, of Marshallville, was fatally shot at the Indian Oaks apartment complex on East Church Street in Fort Valley following an altercation with McKinney. The two men were relatives.

McKinney, who lived at the apartments, has contended that Smith had threatened to cause him bodily harm before Smith pushed McKinney into McKinney’s apartment. Witnesses heard McKinney tell Smith to leave before they heard gunshots. McKinney has maintained that he shot Smith after Smith refused to leave and continued to threaten to beat him.

Speaking after the sentencing, District Attorney David Cooke said, “Disagreements should never be settled with gunfire. In this case, Mr. Smith paid with his life, and the defendant paid with his freedom. I hope Mr. McKinney spends the next dozen years reflecting on the value of settling arguments peaceably, and resolves to do better once he’s released.”

For more news from the District Attorney’s Office, follow on Twitter @DA_DavidCooke, on Facebook at and on Instagram at da_davidcooke.


Contact: Amy Leigh Womack

[email protected]

478-621-6179 (office)

478-319-2529 (cell)