Man pleads guilty to murdering grandmother, sentenced to life in prison

James Paul Pigg (Source: LCSO)
James Paul Pigg (Source: LCSO)

LIMESTONE COUNTY, AL (WAFF) - A man accused of murdering his grandmother pleaded guilty on Monday.

James Paul Pigg is accused of hitting Barbara Delaney in her head with a hammer then shooting her in March 2012.

James Pigg's defense attorney argued a motion to suppress any mention of the hammer during the trial. The defense said it would be irrelevant because gunshot wounds caused Delaney's death.

The judge denied the motion.

Investigators say Pigg hit his grandmother's head with a hammer several times, she ran outside seeking help and was on the ground when Pigg shot her multiple times.

Pigg was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.

The victim's daughter, Dianna Harber, could barely hold back tears as she spoke outside the Athens courthouse Monday. She said a friend called her that morning to inform her Pigg would be in court. She rushed to the courthouse, where she learned about the plea deal.

"I talked to my son an hour before it happened," Harber said, referring to the night of Delaney's death. "The next thing I knew, the jail was calling me and telling me my mother was dead and my son was under arrest."

Since then, Harber has searched for answers. She said her son has not told her much.

District Attorney Brian Jones said the killing involved a fight over a car, where Delaney took the keys away from Pigg.

"This is not gonna bring my mother back, and it just took my son away," said Harber. "I understand you can't kill nobody - I understand that, and I understand he has to be punished for it."

Copyright 2014 WAFF. All rights reserved.