Jamie Hood
Photo: Channel 2 Action News
Photo: Channel 2 Action News

What to know about the Jamie Hood murder trial

An Athens-Clarke County jury Monday found Jamie Hood guilty in the 2011 shooting death of a police officer after less than six hours of deliberation. Among other charges, Hood was also convicted of attempted murder in the shooting of another police officer.

His trial included more than one unconventional moment: Hood acted as his own attorney — admitting to the crime, proceeding with trial, testifying and cross-examining a police officer he shot. Here are eight things to know about Hood, the case against him and his crimes.

1. Hood admitted to shooting Athens-Clarke County police officers Tony Howard and Elmer "Buddy" Christian on March 22, 2011. Christian died as a result of the shooting, though Hood said his intention was to kill Howard. “I hated killing the man,” he said of Christian. “I been telling (people) for years I didn’t mean to do it."

2. A jury will now hear addititional testimony to decide whether Hood will receive the death penalty, a punishment sought by District Attorney Kenneth Mauldin. 

3. The jury, which is made up of nine men and three men, heard 110 witnesses over 19 days. Hood was indicted on 70 criminal counts involving 15 victims and convicted on 36 of those charges.

4. The crime spree started when Judon Brooks came to Hood’s mother’s house earlier that March day. Hood said he had filled Brooks’ order for 50 pounds of marijuana, but that his friend tried to rob him. So, he said, he told three other men with him to bind Brooks’ ankles and wrists with zip ties and put him in the trunk of a car. Brooks later escaped and called police, and Hood crossed paths with Howard.

5. Hood said he shot the officers because he feared for his safety from Howard. Police killed one of his brothers years earlier, and Hood said he heard a voice say about Christian, “Don’t let them do you like they done me.”

6. Following the shootings, Hood held nine people hostage while negotiating with police. His four-day manhunt ended in a televised surrender that he called to ensure his safety.

7. Hood was also found guilty of murdering Kenneth Omari Wray three months before the officers were shot. He said he did everything the prosecutors said, except kill Wray. “I’m not here to make excuses,” he said.

8. Hood accused Mauldin of fabricating and withholding evidence throughout his trial, including Howard’s patrol car camera system that would have shown his motivation for the shooting and a cell phone recording that reveals statements Hood made about killing Wray.

9. Hood served 12 years in prison for an armed robbery conviction when he was 19. He said he sold drugs to support his family because he said he could not find a job after his prison term.

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