Madison County DA, Huntsville lawyer say justice was served in murder trial for police officer

They now comment on what this can mean moving forward.

Posted: May 7, 2021 9:40 PM
Updated: May 7, 2021 10:07 PM

"There was zero hostility or aggression by Mr. Parker when the officers arrived and the first officer there, Officer Pegues, she is what you would hope to show up to your house because she was trying to help this man," said Madison County District Attorney Robert Broussard.

William Darby faces up to 20 years to life in prison after he was convicted for the murder of 43-year-old Jeffery Parker in April of 2018.

Now, local leaders are speaking out about this historic case.

A historic case is exactly what folks are calling this Darby verdict.

Broussard and Huntsville lawyer, Mark McDaniel, say this should have never happened in the first place and justice was served Friday.

"The effects of this case will reverberate not only in this city, in this state, but in this entire nation. Every shooting now will be looked at," said McDaniel.

Mark McDaniel is a Huntsville attorney and he told WAAY 31 Friday's end to a fairly quick trial should show us one thing: nobody is above the law.

The issue in Officer Darby's case was did he shoot Parker with reasonable evidence that he would bring harm to those involved? From the body camera footage shown in court and the jurors deliberating for 2 hours, that answer was no.

"There's a blind-folded lady holding a set of scales and that's what we pursue. If the defendant or the offender happens to be wearing a police uniform, so be it," said Broussard.

Broussard, along with McDaniel, told WAAY 31 no one should have died on that day 3 years ago.

They say there are good people in the world who just make bad or questionable decisions, and it's always unfortunate when someone dies at the hand of someone else when a better option could have sufficed.

"Jeffery Parker...He was just a regular guy who was maybe not on top of the world at the time," said Broussard.

Broussard also says he hopes the family can start their healing process after the yearslong process of getting this trial together.

McDaniel says this is yet another push for mental health advocates needing to be embedded in law enforcement agencies right now.

"Mr. Parker would be alive, Mr. Darby would've never gone to trial, we would not be here today if we'd have had that," he said.

Officer Darby's bond was set at $100,000, but within just a few hours, he bonded out before 5 p.m. Friday. Now, he waits for his final sentencing, which could happen over the next several weeks.

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