Jury finds Jacob Shaffer guilty of capital murder - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Jury finds Jacob Shaffer guilty of capital murder

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Jacob Shaffer in court Jacob Shaffer in court
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HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

The man who confessed to murdering six people in two different counties was found guilty during a mini trial on Monday.

In March, Jacob Shaffer pleaded guilty to the murder of Sidney Dempsey, who was found bludgeoned to death at a Huntsville business in 2009.

Shaffer had also pleaded guilty to murdering five others in Lincoln County Tennessee. The victims include Shaffer's wife, her son, brother and father, and a neighbor.

Shaffer faces life in prison after making his guilty plea to capital murder. He is scheduled to be sentenced Tuesday at 10 a.m.

Prosecutors originally sought the death penalty but Shaffer's statements to investigators in 2009 were tossed out of court because a lawyer was not present at the time, according to court documents.

Even though Shaffer pleaded guilty to the crimes, Alabama's unique court system still requires him to have what is commonly known as a mini trial.

Amy Bishop-Anderson, the former University of Alabama, Huntsville professor who was convicted for the 2010 killings of three faculty members, also had a mini trial last fall.

Representative Chris England (D-Tuscaloosa) introduced a bill earlier this year that seeks to eliminate mini trials for capital murder trials with guilty pleas, citing their unnecessary expense to the state.

HB-262 passed the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday. 

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