Jurors reach verdict in penalty phase in Guntersville triple-murder case

Jurors reach verdict in penalty phase in Guntersville triple-murder case
Published: Oct. 26, 2022 at 4:19 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 28, 2022 at 6:31 AM CDT
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GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Jurors gathered on Friday to hear sentencing evidence against a man convicted in the deaths of three people in Guntersville in 2018.

The jury heard sentencing evidence and deliberated a sentencing verdict on Friday. Twelve jurors voted for the death penalty.

Jimmy Spencer faced seven counts of capital murder after being accused of causing the deaths of Martha Reliford, Marie Martin and Colton Lee. After deliberating for about 30 minutes on Wednesday, the jury determined that Spencer was guilty of all seven counts.

The prosecution in the case says that in 2018, Spencer killed the three people in an effort to steal money to make ends meet. The prosecution said that Spencer was unemployed and homeless at the time of the murders.

During the trial, audio was played in which Spencer was heard confessing to the murders. In the audio, Spencer says that he went to Martha Reliford’s home to steal money from her then when he realized she could report him to the police, he decided to kill her.

Spencer then said he went across the street to take money from Marie Martin’s home, he then killed her and her seven-year-old great-grandson. The audio also went into detail about how he killed them.

Prior to the start of the trial, there were questions as to whether Spencer could face the death penalty due to his low IQ.

A judge ruled prior to the start of the case that the prosecution would be allowed to seek the death penalty. Judge Riley said at least 10 jurors had to vote for the death penalty while he says at least seven have to vote for life in prison without parole.

A separate sentencing hearing will be conducted on Nov. 14 at 10 a.m.