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Thread: Jeremy Elwin Owens Sentenced in 2019 AL Murder of Sgt. Wytasha Carter

  1. #1
    Senior Member CnCP Addict Steven's Avatar
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    Jeremy Elwin Owens Sentenced in 2019 AL Murder of Sgt. Wytasha Carter




    Felon charged with capital murder in shooting death of Birmingham police Sgt. Wytasha Carter

    By Carol Robinson
    AL.com

    A convicted felon has been charged in the shooting death of Birmingham police Sgt. Wytasha Carter.

    One month and one day after Carter died in a predawn shooting in Birmingham, authorities formally charged 31-year-old Jeremy Elwin Owens with capital murder in the slaying. Owens also is charged with attempted murder for the wounding of Officer Lucas Allums and for allegedly shooting at North Precinct Sgt. Talana Brown.

    "Today is a very difficult day,'' said Birmingham Police Chief Patrick Smith.

    Owens was taken into custody Thursday morning by State Bureau of Investigation agents and Birmingham police when he was released from UAB’s Spain Rehabilitation Center. Owens, who has limited mobility since the Jan. 13 shooting, was transferred from the hospital to rehab more than a week ago.

    According to court records, the warrants against Owens were issued on Jan. 25. They were not served on him until today because he was not officially in police custody, though he has been under guard since the deadly shooting. He is charged with capital murder, two counts of attempted murder, certain persons forbidden to possess a pistol, third-degree receiving stolen property and first-degree possession marijuana, all for offenses committed on Jan. 13, records show.

    "We are grateful to the men and women of the Birmingham Police Department and the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency for their work in this case under very difficult circumstances,'' said Jefferson County District Attorney Danny Carr.

    Owens, in a wheelchair, declined comment as he was released from rehabilitation. More than a half dozen officers in their dress uniforms were on hand for the release. Owens was transported to the Birmingham Police Department headquarters and then taken from there to the Jefferson County Jail without bond. He was booked into the county jail at 12:22 p.m.

    He was transported wearing the handcuffs that belonged to the slain sergeant. "I only felt it was fitting that if this man is going to jail, we’re going to use Sgt. Carter’s handcuffs,'' Smith said, calling Carter "an incredible officer, an incredible sergeant and an honorable man. “This is one small way we can honor him.”

    Jefferson County sheriff’s Capt. David Agee said jail officials will determine where Owens will be housed within the jail. "If he needs to be in medical confinement, he will,'' Agee said. “If he needs to be separated from other inmates, he will.”

    Smith said he spoke with Carter’s family to notify them of the formal charges. He described their reaction as “bittersweet.”

    The shooting happened about 2 a.m. that Sunday when officers were working a special detail dealing with a rash of car break-ins in that area. An undercover officer spotted at least two suspects who appeared to be trying door handles to see if they were locked in the 900 block of Fifth Avenue North outside the 4 Seasons Bar and Grill. The officer called for backup, and the sergeant arrived.

    The officer and the sergeant approached two suspects. "What I can tell you is it appears our officers were unable to respond,'' the chief said. “They were taken completely by surprise.”

    Carter, Officer Lucas Allums and Owens were rushed to UAB Hospital’s Trauma Center by Birmingham Fire and Rescue Service. “Both of them were shot in very critical areas,'' the chief previously said of the officers.

    Carter, shot in the head, was pronounced dead at the hospital. Allums was critically wounded but released from UAB Hospital nine days after the shooting. He is still recovering.

    "Trust and believe me when I tell you he has a very long road to recovery,'' Smith said. “He’s in rehabilitation right now and we’re very much wishing for a strong recovery and his return to the department.”

    At least one other officer on the scene shot Owens. An 18-year-old initially jailed in connection with the incident was released without being charged with any crime. However, police on Thursday announced charges against him - Michael Todd - for third-degree receiving stolen property and first-degree possession of marijuana. The gun used to kill Carter was stolen.

    The Birmingham Police Department’s Crime Reduction Team took Todd into custody without incident at 671 Earline Circle.

    Owens, who lives in the Center Point area, was arrested in December 2011 after Birmingham police said he robbed another man at gunpoint and shot at him. He pleaded guilty on Nov. 5, 2012 to first-degree robbery and the attempted murder charge against him was dismissed.

    Owens was sentenced to 20 years in prison with three years to serve. He was released Jan. 1, 2015, according to an Alabama Department of Corrections spokesman.

    He was arrested again by Jefferson County sheriff’s deputies on Nov. 28, 2018 on charges of possession of a controlled substance, being a felon in possession of a firearm, possession of marijuana, reckless driving and other traffic violations.

    According to court records, deputies tried to pull over Owens because they noticed he was driving without use of his seatbelt and he fled from lawmen. A short time later, he lost control of the vehicle, crashed. According to an arrest report, deputies repeatedly ordered Owens – still in the crashed vehicle – to show his hands but he refused. “The offender appeared to be reaching for something underneath his seat, possibly a gun,’’ according to the arrest report. A supervisor kicked out the car window to keep Owens from possibly getting the gun, the report states, and Owens was taken into custody.

    “The offender was resisting and attempted to get on his feet to flee,’’ a deputy wrote.

    Owens’ 14-year-old stepson was in the vehicle with him at the time of the chase, records state. “He was crying and visibly upset from the incident,’’ a deputy wrote in charging documents. “The driver drove recklessly, almost causing several wrecks.’’

    A subsequent search of Owens’ Chevy Malibu – which was totaled in the crash - turned up two scales with narcotics residue on them, as well as three loaded handguns that were in a black book bag. One of the weapons had been reported stolen to Bessemer police and another had been reported stolen to Birmingham police. Authorities noted in charging documents that there were multiple extended clip magazines and 50-round drum loaded.

    Authorities also confiscated heroin, Molly, marijuana and unused sandwiches baggies. “Owens stated that he has firearms because he is the head of the house,’’ the report stated. “Owens advised that he just purchased the narcotics the day prior and has to keep his guns because selling dope can be dangerous.”

    Owens was booked into the Jefferson County Jail and released on his own recognizance Nov. 30. He was set to appear in court on April 3 to give him time to hire an attorney.

    Noting the November 2018 arrests, the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office in December filed a motion to revoke Owens’ probation on the 2012 robbery conviction. “These new allegations against Mr. Owens indicate that his being at large will pose a real and present danger to himself and the public at large,’’ a prosecutor wrote in the motion. “Moreover, this latest arrest is a blatant violation of the terms of his probation.”

    Jefferson County Circuit Judge Teresa Pulliam on Dec. 21 directed a clerk to issue a probation violation warrant against Owens and ordered that once he was arrested, he would be held on no bond. It was that warrant that was outstanding against Owens when the Jan. 13 deadly shooting happened.

    On Jan. 30, Pulliam ordered that warrant to be recalled after she learned his probation actually ended in January 2018, not January 2019, as initially believed. That recalled was entered into the court system on Wednesday.

    The following day – on Jan. 31 - Jefferson County Deputy District Attorney Louvenia Borom filed a motion to revoke Owens’ bond on the November 2018 arrests, noting the new, and violent, charges against him. District Judge Shanta Craig Owens on Feb. 1 agreed with the prosecutor’s request, deeming that his bond on the older cases was insufficient based upon the new charges against him.

    Judge Owens ordered a no bond for the suspect and said a formal bond revocation hearing would be held following his arrest.

    Thursday’s press conference was held at the North Precinct, where Carter last served. Behind the chief and other ranking officers in attendance was the sign “Rule #1 - Everyone Goes Home.”

    "That why we are here. We stand behind that rule and we’re going to do everything we can to uphold that rule,'' Smith said. “And when that rule is broken, we’re going to do everything we can to apprehend that person.”

    https://www.al.com/news/birmingham/2...ha-carter.html
    Last edited by Steven; 11-14-2019 at 08:45 AM.

  2. #2
    Administrator Helen's Avatar
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    Edited:

    September 24, 2019

    Suspect indicted in shooting death of Birmingham police Sgt. Wytasha Carter

    By Carol Robinson
    AL.com

    The suspect in the fatal shooting of Birmingham police Sgt. Wytasha Carter has been indicted on multiple charges.

    A Jefferson County grand jury issued the indictments against 31-year-old Jeremy Elwin Owens Aug. 23, according to court records made public Tuesday. He was indicted on charges of capital murder, two counts of attempted murder, being a felon in possession of a firearm, receiving stolen property and possession of marijuana.

    The attempted murder charges are for the wounding of Officer Lucas Allums and for allegedly shooting at Sgt. Talana Brown. He was initially arrested on the same crimes Feb. 14, one month and one day after Carter was killed.

    https://www.al.com/news/birmingham/2...ha-carter.html
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  3. #3
    Senior Member CnCP Addict Steven's Avatar
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    Prosecutors to seek death penalty against man accused of killing Sgt. Wytasha Carter

    By Howard Koplowitz
    AL.com

    Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty against Jeremy Elwin Owens, the man accused of fatally shooting Birmingham police Sgt. Wytasha Carter in January, according to court records.

    Deputy District Attorney Neal Zarzour said prosecutors intend to seek the death penalty against Owens, 31, in a Tuesday filing.

    Owens was charged in February with capital murder in the Jan. 13 shooting of Carter, 44. He was also charged with attempted murder for the wounding of Officer Lucas Allums and for allegedly shooting at North Precinct Sgt. Talana Brown.

    The shooting happened about 2 a.m. Jan. 13 when officers were working a special detail dealing with a rash of car break-ins in that area. An undercover officer spotted at least two suspects who appeared to be trying door handles to see if they were locked in the 900 block of Fifth Avenue North outside the 4 Seasons Bar and Grill. The officer called for backup, and the sergeant arrived.

    The officer and the sergeant approached two suspects. "What I can tell you is it appears our officers were unable to respond,'' said Birmingham police Chief Patrick Smith shortly after the incident. “They were taken completely by surprise.”

    Carter, Allums and Owens were rushed to UAB Hospital’s Trauma Center by Birmingham Fire and Rescue Service. “Both of them were shot in very critical areas,'' the chief previously said of the officers.

    Carter, shot in the head, was pronounced dead at the hospital. Allums was critically wounded but released from UAB Hospital nine days after the shooting. He is still recovering.

    "Trust and believe me when I tell you he has a very long road to recovery,'' Smith said. “He’s in rehabilitation right now and we’re very much wishing for a strong recovery and his return to the department.”

    At least one other officer on the scene shot Owens. An 18-year-old initially jailed in connection with the incident was released without being charged with any crime. However, police ultimately announced charges against him - Michael Todd - for third-degree receiving stolen property and first-degree possession of marijuana. The gun used to kill Carter was stolen. Todd was taken into custody without incident.

    https://www.al.com/news/birmingham/2...ha-carter.html

  4. #4
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    Accused cop killer pleads guilty in 2019 slaying of Birmingham police Sgt. Wytasha Carter

    The suspect in the 2019 fatal shooting of Birmingham police Sgt. Wytasha Carter pleaded guilty Monday to the slain officers death.

    Jefferson County District Attorney Danny Carr announced that Jeremy Elwin Owens today pleaded guilty to capital murder and was sentenced to life in prison without parole. He avoided the death penalty by taking the plea.

    He also pleaded guilty to two counts of attempted murder in the wounding of Officer Lucas Allums and for shooting at Sgt. Talana Brown. He received life in the two attempted murder convictions.

    Carr said the plea ends the criminal case, but we know the effects of this defendants actions will be felt by the Carter family, the Birmingham Police Department and our community forever.

    We want to continue to give our condolences to the Carter family as well as our commitment to honor the life of Sgt. Wytasha Carter as we continue to serve this community and fight for justice,' Carr said. So many people were affected by the deadly actions of the defendant on that day and we recognize the Birmingham Police Department, in losing Sgt. Carter, lost a brother, a friend, and a mentor to the many young dedicated officers still out there each and every day serving the community.

    The shooting happened at 2:11 a.m. in the 800 block of Fifth Avenue North.

    Owens had been seriously wounded in the exchange of gunfire with police and was taken into custody when he was released from UABs Spain Rehabilitation Center. Owens, who has limited mobility since the Jan. 13 shooting, was transported in the slain sergeants handcuffs.

    On the Sunday morning of the deadly shooting, Jan. 13, 2019, Birmingham police Officer Aaron Smith was working undercover in the 800 block of Fifth Avenue North near the 4 Seasons Bar & Grill after a rash of car break-ins in the area.

    Sometime before 2 a.m., he was doing surveillance from his parked car when a dark-colored Volvo pulled up and three men got out of the vehicle. When he saw them looking into cars and pulling on some door handles, Smith called for uniformed officers to respond to the area.

    When marked units began to arrive, two of the men Owens and 18-year-old Michael Todd got back into the Volvo. Allums was first to arrive on the scene, followed by Brown and Carter.

    Allums and Brown, according to multiple statements, approached Owens in the drivers seat of the vehicle. Carter was at the passengers side with Todd. Officers reported an odor of marijuana and a visible open bottle of Hennessy in the vehicle. Carter ordered both men out of the Volvo, and quickly handcuffed Todd.

    At that point, Brown was patting down Owens and felt something in his right front pocket. She asked him what it was, and he said he didnt know. At that point, he was facing the vehicle with his hands on the hood. He kept trying to bring his arms off the vehicle,' an investigator testified at an earlier hearing. There were a couple of instances he was instructed to put his hands on the car. When he first exited, he hit the roof and that got the attention of Sgt. Carter.

    Allums was instructed by Carter to cover Owens with his Taser stun gun, which Allums did. He was told that if Owens moved again, he was to be tased. Owens began to move again, and Brown then asked Allums for his handcuffs. Allums lowered his Taser to hand her the cuffs, and Owens tried to run.

    Allums and Brown tussled with Owens, and thats when the first shots were fired. By then they were in the roadway. He (Allums) heard gunshots. He realized during that time period he himself was shot,' the agent testified. He felt like he had been shot multiple times in the back,' but continued to wrestle Owens to the ground.

    Carter, Officer Lucas Allums and Owens were rushed to UAB Hospitals Trauma Center by Birmingham Fire and Rescue Service. Both of them were shot in very critical areas,' the chief previously said of the officers.

    Brown reported she heard gunshots and saw Allums fall to the ground. She pulled her gun and returned fire. Smith got out of his surveillance car at that point and fired three shots. Though wounded, Allums discharged his weapon as well. Brown told investigators Owens said, Im dead, and fell to the ground. She kicked his gun out of the way.

    She did not realize that Carter had been shot and went to check on Allums. Moments later she learned that Carter had been shot, but Smith was already aware of that and reported, Sgt. Carter was slumped over on the ground, bleeding from his head. The autopsy showed a bullet went in the front of Carters head, traveled through his brain and exited through the back of his head.

    Testimony at an earlier hearing showed four people fired their guns that morning- Owens and three officers but there is no forensic evidence to show whose bullet killed the veteran lawman.

    Still, dash cam video from the morning of Jan. 13 showed multiple muzzle flashes coming from Owens gun toward three uniformed officers, and an 18-year-old who was with Owens at the time of the shooting told investigators he noticed Carter go down after the first couple of shots were fired by Owens.

    Owens, who lives in the Center Point area, was arrested in December 2011 after Birmingham police said he robbed another man at gunpoint and shot at him. He pleaded guilty on Nov. 5, 2012 to first-degree robbery and the attempted murder charge against him was dismissed.

    Owens was sentenced to 20 years in prison with three years to serve. He was released Jan. 1, 2015, according to an Alabama Department of Corrections spokesman.

    He was arrested again by Jefferson County sheriffs deputies on Nov. 28, 2018 on charges of possession of a controlled substance, being a felon in possession of a firearm, possession of marijuana, reckless driving and other traffic violations.

    Owens was booked into the Jefferson County Jail and released on his own recognizance Nov. 30. He was set to appear in court on April 3 to give him time to hire an attorney.

    https://www.al.com/news/birmingham/2...ha-carter.html
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