9:43 PM

Tony Friend (mug shot GCSO)

The man who authorities have named as the prime suspect in the double homicide of a Willard couple has pleaded guilty to a federal weapons charge.

Tony Friend appeared in federal court on September 12th and changed his plea to guilty for charges of  unlawful transportation of firearms. Friend and his wife, Windy, were arrested on drug charges in July - however, the drug charges against the Friends were dismissed, and Windy Friend was released from custody.

In bond reduction papers that were unsealed in July, authorities in Greene County said Friend was the "primary target" in the 2011 shooting deaths of Russell and Becky Porter.

Rusty and Becky Porter

Rusty and Becky Porter went missing from their Willard home in April of 2011 and their bodies were found in rural Protem, near where Tony Friend grew up, about three months later.  Becky Ellsworth-Porter was a long time resident of Stone County before her marriage to Porter.

Authorities say cell phone records show Friend was in the area where the couple's bodies were found around the time the Porters went missing.

Friend will be sentenced on the weapon's charges in about six weeks.

So far no one has been charged for the murders of the Porter's.