The capital murder conviction of an Albertville man who killed his pregnant wife and unborn child was upheld by the Alabama Supreme Court.
Back in 2009, Jessie Livell Phillips, 38, shot and killed Erica Droze Phillips, 23, at a car wash in Guntersville. He was convicted for their deaths in 2012 and sentenced to death.
Phillips, Erica, their two kids and Erica’s brother, Billy, had lunch at a Hampton Cove restaurant before they headed to the carwash where Erica and Billy’s brother, Lance worked.
According to the Attorney General’s Office, Phillips and Erica separated from Erica’s brothers and were in one of the wash bays. Billy passed by and saw Phillips “fiddling with” a gun.
Billy testified in court that as he passed the car, he heard Erica yell “Help me, Bill” and that he “got there just in time to see [Phillips] kill her.”
Phillips fled the scene and Lance called the police. Erica was transported to Huntsville Hospital where she died the following morning.
Albertville Police found and arrested Phillips at which point he said, “I did it. I don’t want no trouble.”
In a statement, Attorney General Steve Marshall said:
“This was a tragic case in which a young mother and her unborn child were brutally murdered with her minor age children nearby. There is no more appropriate case to warrant a death sentence and I am glad to have been given the opportunity as Attorney General to see this case to its rightful conclusion for the victims’ family.”
Marshall originally prosecuted the case in 2012 while he was the district attorney of Marshall County.
The murder conviction was upheld in 2015 after it was appealed at the Court of Criminal Appeals. The case was argued in front of the Alabama Supreme Court in November 2017.