2004 Bibb County murderer resentenced to life without parole
The man convicted of a brutal 2004 murder in Bibb County was once again sentenced to life without parole, Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall announced Wednesday.
Troy Connell was first convicted of capital murder in the death of Steven C. Spears Jr. in 2006 and received a mandatory sentence of life without parole for crimes he committed when the was 16.
Connell appealed that sentence after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2012 that mandatory life-without-parole sentences could not be given to juveniles convicted of capital murder.
The Supreme Court’s decision involved another Alabama case in which Evan Miller also received a mandatory life-without-parole sentence for a capital murder he committed in 2003 while he was age 14. Like Connell, Miller was resentenced on appeal to life without parole.
“Troy Connell willfully committed horrendous crimes, taking the life of an innocent man followed by the brutal assault of the victim’s wife,” said Marshall in a statement. “On the scale of justice, the savage and evil nature of his crimes outweighs the fact that he committed them when he was 16. This week, the court correctly ruled that he should again receive the maximum allowable punishment for which he is eligible, life without parole.”
In November 2006, Connell was convicted of three counts of capital murder and one count of assault for the Dec. 10, 2004, drive-by shotgun shooting into a vehicle of a Bibb County couple in which Steven C. Spears Jr. was fatally wounded. After the shooting, Spears’ wife Monica was viciously beaten with a chain.
The attacks occurred on State Highway 139 in rural Bibb County.
Connell’s co-defendant, Jimmy Lamar Killingsworth Jr, is also serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole for his involvement in Connell’s crimes.