Man found guilty of attempted murder in 2012 burglary - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Man found guilty of attempted murder in 2012 burglary

John David Hughes (Covington County D.A.) John David Hughes (Covington County D.A.)

A Wing man has been found guilty of attempted murder in a 2012 burglary.

John David Hughes, 44, was convicted by a jury for the 2012 burglary and attempted murder of David Reynolds. The jury deliberated for 18 minutes before they returned with a verdict. District Attorney Walt Merrell, who represented the state, said he "appreciates the jury's verdict and the patience they put into sifting through all the evidence."

Hughes was arrested on May 15, 2012 in connection to a home invasion at a residence on Red Oak Road, by the Covington County Sheriff's Department. Hughes was detained by the home owner's 16-year-old son and the victim, David Reynolds. According to Reynolds' trial testimony, he was awakened around 2:30 a.m. by a noise. Reynolds then opened his bedroom door and found Hughes standing a few feet away. Then Reynolds stated that Hughes raised a 12-gauge shotgun and fired a round at point blank range. Reynolds saw the barrel before the shot went off and was able to avoid the shot, at which point he retreated back into the bedroom. Hughes pursued Reynolds and then shot him in the left shoulder with a second round.

The homeowner, Ellen Weed, testified in court that Reynolds escaped the bedroom after the second shot. Hughes followed and that is when Reynolds ambushed Hughes in the hall way. Weed stated her son then assisted Reynolds in subduing Hughes until Sheriff's officers arrived.

Hughes decided to absent himself from the court proceedings, and was represented by Bill Alverson, Jr. and William Alverson, III.

A defendant has a right to be present in court, but if he does not want to be present he can waive that right," Merrell said. "That was a first for me."

Merrell stated that Hughes told investigators during an interview that he had been drinking beer "all night long" and also had taken four Lortabs.

"Yet again, we have a case that has a direct link to drugs or alcohol," Merrell stated. "I'd say that this started out as a drug crime of sorts, and ended up with someone nearly dying. Who knows whether Mr. Hughes would have made these criminal decisions if he wasn't impaired?"

Merrell said he intends to ask the court to sentence Hughes to consecutive life sentences for his crimes.

"Hughes has at least one prior felony conviction," said Merrell. "At sentencing for these two felonies, he faces up to life in prison."  

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