Family of shooter, victims asks prosecutors to not seek death penalty

Published 3:03 pm Thursday, August 2, 2012

Prosecutors will not seek the death penalty for Ann Campbell, who is accused of shooting her two sons in June 2011, killing one.

C.J. Robinson, deputy district attorney, said officials originally sought the death penalty but changed course after conversations with the family of Campbell and the victims.

“The family unanimously asked us not to pursue the death penalty,” Robinson said. “The death penalty is no longer on the table.”

Robinson said he recently notified the court of the decision. Prosecutors will now seek a sentence of life in the prison without parole.

District Court Judge Rhonda Hardesty ruled on Aug. 9, 2011 that there was enough evidence to bring the case before a grand jury.

Chilton County Sheriff’s Department Investigator Jeff Cobb was the only witness called during that hearing. Cobb testified that when officers arrived at the scene, Campbell was seated on a sofa in her mobile home, about eight feet away from her son, Michael Campbell, who lay dying from three shots from a .22 bolt-action rifle.

Another of Campbell’s sons, Bailey Mays, was also shot but fled to a relative’s house on the same piece of property off County Road 69 in the Enterprise community.

According to Cobb’s testimony, Mays told officers he was asleep on the couch in the living room when he heard gunshots. He then saw Michael Campbell crawling down a hallway that led from a bedroom, pleading with Ann Campbell not to shoot him again.

Cobb testified that Michael Campbell appeared to still be breathing when officers first arrived but that he was not responsive and died before he could be transported to a hospital.

After shooting Michael Campbell a third time, Ann Campbell started toward Mays and said, “We don’t have to live like this anymore.”

Mays tried to exit the residence but found the front door locked. He escaped out a back door and later realized he had been shot in the thigh.