Deounta Demetrius Curtis and Claude Travis Simpson were sentenced to life without parole for the murder of Hammond.
In addition, Curtis was also found guilty on armed robbery, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, kidnapping, cruelty to children in the third degree and possession of a firearm during a felony. He was not found guilty on the charge of malice murder.
Along with life in prison for murder the other convictions add up to an additional 105 years sentenced.
Simpson was found guilty of armed robbery, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, cruelty to children in the third degree and possession of a firearm during a felony. He was not found guilty on one count of murder and kidnapping. The additional convictions add up to 85 years to serve consecutive with the life without parole sentencing.
This sentencing brings the trial in Gordon County to fruition nearly one year after the fatal home invasion.
“I don’t think it’s safe to release Simpson and Curtis back to the streets of Calhoun,” District Attorney Joe Campbell said in the beginning of the sentencing hearing.
Both defendants were given the opportunity to make final statements in the hearing before the sentencing was determined.
Curtis’ attorney said the jury was shown insufficient evidence to implicate his client in the murder, and said there was DNA evidence left untested.
“The DNA on the glove could have been the second man in the house, which would have showed Curtis was not in the house,” Curtis’ attorney said.
Simpson’s defense said that he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.
“My client had only been out of custody for two weeks, so there is no way he could have planned this,” Simpson’s attorney said. “Brent Carey was the driving force behind this case and he was given a generous sentencing of 45 years.”
Carey, the third man implicated in the murder, pleaded guilty to lesser charges earlier this month and was sentenced to 45-years in prison for his involvement.
He was not convicted of murder.
Simpson’s attorney also said that Simpson had been the only one to offer condolences to the family.
After both defendants were given the chance to make their final statements, Judge Smith explained his reasoning for the chosen sentencing.
“Even with the most complex and technical scientific machines it is hard for us to look in the hearts and minds of a person,” Judge Smith said. “However the jury was able to see into the hearts of the gentlemen that planned a horrible crime.”
Judge Smith said this was something other than a business deal gone bad; three men went to buy masks and gloves and plotted to commit a crime.
“There was no way that evening was going to end well,” Judge Smith said. “At the least it would have been three convicted felons committing burglary.
“They do not deserve to walk on the streets of Calhoun again, “ Judge Smith added. “Life without parole.”