Judge orders trial date for Jemison murder suspect

Published 2:14 pm Friday, March 11, 2016

A trial date has been set for the Jemison man accused of killing his wife during a dispute in April 2015.

According to court records, Chilton County Circuit Judge Ben A. Fuller filed an order March 10 setting a trial date of April 18 for Eric Heath Price, 26.

Price faces one charge of murder in the shooting death of his wife, and three charges of making terrorist threats.

Price was scheduled to have a plea hearing on Wednesday, but Fuller’s order said the hearing was held open and his case was scheduled for trial.

Price allegedly shot his wife April 13, 2015, at Jemison Internal Medicine, a doctor’s office near the couple’s residence, as she tried to escape him.

The three charges of making terrorist threats stem from Price pointing a gun at three different people in the doctor’s office during the incident, including the doctor.

Price was indicted by an August 2015 grand jury in Chilton County.

He remains in jail without a bond after Chilton County District Judge Rhonda Hardesty filed an order May 5, 2015, citing the nature of the offense charged, the probability of convictions, the likelihood of a lengthy sentence and the type of weapon used in the crime, a firearm, as reasons a bond would not be set in the case.

After the shooting at Jemison Internal Medicine, located off U.S. Highway 31 in Jemison, Price returned to the nearby home he shared with his wife and barricaded himself inside, leading to a lengthy standoff with police.

Authorities said at the time of the incident that the suspect and victim had been involved in a domestic altercation that led to the victim to the doctor’s office asking for help.

While the victim was standing in the lobby with witnesses, Price entered with a firearm in hand and approached his wife.

After words were exchanged, Price allegedly fired a single shot, striking the victim.

No one else in or around the area was harmed.

The doctor’s office staff immediately locked themselves in a back room until the office was secured by law enforcement.

Agencies including the Chilton County Sheriff’s Office, Jemison Police Department, Thorsby Police Department, Clanton Police Department, Alabama State Troopers, State of Alabama Law Enforcement Agency and U.S. Marshals responded to the incident.

If convicted, the murder charge carries a punishment of 10 years to life in prison.