BREAKING NEWS: Sam Parker found guilty of murder, sentenced to life in prison
September 3, 2009
[Excerpts] Sam Parker, the ex-cop on trial for murder, has been found guilty of murder... Judge Jon “Bo” Wood sentenced Parker to life in prison on the murder conviction, five years for the false statements, and five years for violating oath of office, all to run concurrent... The judge asked Parker if he had any remarks, and Parker replied “No, your honor.” He left peacefully with deputies to a waiting elevator. “We are very very pleased — the family was just ecstatic with the verdict,” said Floyd County District Attorney Leigh Patterson, who prosecuted the case. “They’re finally going to have some peace,” she said. “But I told them we’re not going to stop looking for Theresa — even though we have a guilty verdict”... Parker was charged in February 2008 with murdering his wife Theresa. He has been in jail since then. Theresa was a dispatcher with Walker County 911. Her last known contact with anyone was about 9:30 p.m. on March 21, 2007. Her body has not been found. Sam was a sergeant with the LaFayette Police Department when she disappeared.
YESTERDAY'S CONVICTION AND SENTENCING TO LIFE IN PRISON WAS A VICTORY, BUT NOT AN ANSWER. THE CLIMATE - BROTHERHOOD OF THE EMPOWERED - THAT ALLOWED OFFICIALS IN THE CITY AND COUNTY DEPARTMENTS TO KNOW WHAT HE WAS DOING AND SAYING CONTINUES THROUGHOUT GEORGIA AND ACROSS THE UNITED STATES. AFTER MORE THAN 2000 POSTS ON THIS BLOG ABOUT THE FEARFUL AND SLAIN VICTIMS OF OFFICER-INVOLVED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE [OIDV], AND AFTER WORKING FOR THE LAWYERS WHO HANDLED THE $75 MILLION DOLLAR WRONGFUL DEATH LAWSUIT IN BEHALF OF SLAIN POLICE CHIEF'S WIFE, CRYSTAL JUDSON, I KNOW THAT NOTHING THAT MATTERS WILL CHANGE IN GEORGIA WITHOUT A MEGA LAWSUIT. NOTHING. IT'S NOT ABOUT BLAMING INDIVIDUALS - BUT HOLDING SEATS OF POWER ACCOUNTABLE, INSPIRING THEM TO NEVER BE THIS LIABLE AGAIN... A BENEVOLENT ACT IN BEHALF OF ALL OTHER VICTIMS LIKE THERESA - STILL LIVING, THE OTHER EX-WIVES, THE OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS CONNECTED TO VICTIMS, AND EVEN PETS- LIKE THERESA'S CATS- WIDE-EYED AND UNSUSPECTING THAT SOME DEMENTED ASSHOLE LIKE SAM PARKER PLANS TO SLIT THEIR THROATS AND HANG THEM FROM A TREE IN THE YARD JUST TO BE SCARY. SAM PARKER FELT INVINCIBLE BECAUSE NO MATTER WHAT HE DID, NOTHING HAPPENED. THE SYSTEM OF POWER CREATED A MONSTER BY NOT ARRESTING HIM FOR BREAKING LAWS - FOR YEARS AND YEARS AND YEARS.
VIDEO: DAY 14 - BREAKING NEWS - GUILTY
SAM PARKER FOUND GUILTY OF MURDER
September 3rd, 2009
[Excerpts] A criminal court jury on Thursday afternoon found former LaFayette Police sergeant Sam Parker guilty of murder. He was sentenced to life in prison by Judge Jon "Bo" Wood. Parker also received two concurrent five-year terms for violating his oath of office and giving a false statement. He was found not guilty of computer invasion of privacy. The jury from Bartow County deliberated for 23 hours over four days. Parker was found guilty of the slaying of his wife, Theresa, whose body has never been found. She was last seen March 21, 2007... Parker, 51, showed no emotion. He was asked by Judge Wood if he wanted to say anything, and he declined. Judge Wood said he was sentenced to serve "the rest of your natural life" in prison... Ms. Patterson said there had been previous successful prosecutions in Georgia of murder cases where there was no body found. She said the prosecution was aided by the fact it was allowed to display to the jury "similar transactions" and "pattern of conduct" regarding Parker, including the testimony of a former wife who said he put a gun to her head, choked her and handcuffed her to a bed after dragging her by the hair through broken glass. She praised GBI Agt. James Harris for spotting inconsistencies in Parker's statement soon after Ms. Parker was reported missing. Sheriff Wilson said Agt. Harris "did a jam-up wonderful job." He said it was one of the most difficult cases to prosecute he has encountered. The sheriff said of Parker that "the fact that he did not participate in the early searches was a red flag." Sheriff Wilson said of Theresa Parker, "She was a very sweet person..."
THE COUNTY AND CITY WILL PUT THERESA'S NAME ON THINGS - FUNDS, BENCHES, OR PARKS TO PLACATE THE FAMILY. THEY WILL MAKE PROMISES OF CHANGE AND VOICE REGRET, SADNESS AND RESOLVE - BUT ONLY (ONLY) TO WARD OFF A POSSIBLE LAWSUIT. BE YE NOT FOOLED. BE YE NOT SATISFIED. IT WILL BE BUSINESS AS USUAL WITHIN FIVE YEARS IF THE OFFICIALS AND GOVERNMENT ENTITIES ARE NOT HELD ACCOUNTABLE. SADLY, THEY DEAL WITH DEAD BODIES ALL THE TIME AND HAVE BECOME IMMUNE. DOLLARS TALK. ONLY DOLLARS.
VIDEO: DAY 14 - JUDGE SENTENCES FIRED LAFAYETTE POLICE SGT. SAM PARKER TO LIFE IN PRISON
PARKER WILL GET LIFE IN PRISON
Chattanooga Times Free Press
September 3, 2009
[Excerpts] Sam Parker showed no emotion this afternoon when he was sentenced to life in prison for murdering his wife, Theresa Parker, in 2007. The courtroom was packed shortly after 4:30 p.m. Bailiffs stood at the doors and two stood behind Mr. Parker as the verdict was read. Walker County Superior Court Judge Jon “Bo” Wood warned audience to control its emotions as the verdict was read: Guilty of malice murder. Guilty making false statements. Guilty of violating his oath as a public officer. Theresa Parker’s family wept softly in their seats, but otherwise the courtroom remained quiet. The jury was escorted from the courtroom under guard and Judge Wood offered Mr. Parker a chance to comment before he passed sentence. Mr. Parker said he did not want to say anything. Judge Wood read the sentence: Life in prison for murder, plus five-year concurrent terms in the other cases...
PARKER SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR MURDER; PROSECUTOR SAYS SEARCH WILL CONTINUE FOR MISSING WOMAN'S BODY
Rome News Tribune - John Bailey
[Excerpts] ...“We are very very pleased; the family was just ecstatic with the verdict,” said Floyd County District Attorney Leigh Patterson. “They’re finally going to have some peace,” she said. “But I told them we are not going to stop looking for Theresa … even though we have a guilty verdict”... The trial lasted 14 days and consisted of testimony of local law enforcement officials, a former LaFayette police officer who said Parker told him he killed his wife, GBI investigators and Theresa Parker’s family...
THERESA PARKER ALMOST GOT AWAY, BUT POLICE WERE HELPING SAM PARKER - HACKING HER EMAIL, VOUCHING FOR HIM DURING UNOFFICIAL INVESTIGATIONS OF HER, NOT REPORTING HIS KNOWN CRIMES OR ARRESTING HIM - LETTING HIM HIDE FOR STINTS IN MENTAL WARDS TO AVOID REAL CONSEQUENCES -THEN HANDING HIM BACK HIS BADGE AND GUN AS IF NOTHING HAPPENED. THE CITY WAS AWARE OF ACTS, THE COUNTY, THE SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT AND THE LOCAL POLICE - HIS CO-WORKERS - ALL. PEOPLE ASK WHAT'S DIFFERENT ABOUT OFFICER-INVOLVED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE? REALLY? SEEMS LIKE A NO-BRAINER TO ME.
THERESA PARKER'S FAMILY, LAW ENFORCEMENT VOW TO KEEP LOOKING FOR BODY
Chattanooga Times Free Press
Friday, Sept. 4, 2009
[Excerpts] LaFAYETTE, Ga. -- When Theresa Parker's mother, Claire Careathers, prayed, she told her daughter she wouldn't rest until there was justice -- and Thursday afternoon justice was served... At about 4:30 p.m. [yesterday], just as everyone was prepared to come back for another day of waiting, Ms. Parker's niece Amanda Gilbert yelled across the street to her mother, Mrs. Wilson. "Mama! Verdict!" Mrs. Wilson and her three daughters scurried up the courtroom stairs. Mrs. Wilson's husband, Jon Wilson, followed behind, carrying the couple's 2-year-old son, Jon Jr., and whispering to him that it was time to be quiet. Word spread through the courtroom that a verdict was expected. About 50 people waited, sometimes in almost complete silence. Guards took their places around the courtroom -- two behind Mr. Parker, three at each exit. The judge warned the crowd not to show emotion when the decision was read. Walker County's Court Clerk Carter Brown read the verdicts. The family wept silently and Mr. Parker awaited his sentencing. "I'm sure you know there is only one sentence that can be imposed on the first count (of murder)," Judge Wood said to Mr. Parker. The judge asked Mr. Parker if he had anything to say. He didn't and Judge Wood sentenced him to the "rest of your natural life" in a state penitentiary. "You need to go with the sheriff now"... [Full article here]
SELECTIONS FROM LAST WEEK:
VIDEO: DAY 8 OF SGT. SAM PARKER MURDERED-WIFE THERESA TRIAL - Reported by Karen Zatkulak (who best gives the victims voice) for NewsChannel9:
EX WIFE KEILA BEARD:
...HE GRABBED ME BY THE HAIR AND HE DRUG ME THROUGH THE HOUSE INTO THE BEDROOM... [ KEILA BEARD TESTIFIED THAT PARKER DRAGGED HER THROUGH GLASS, HANDCUFFED HER TO THE BEDPOST, AND LEFT TO CLEAN UP THE BLOOD.] ...I'VE NEVER EXPERIENCED ANYTHING LIKE THAT BEFORE, AND I WAS VERY SCARED, AND UPSET, AND IT WAS LIKE MY WORLD HAD COME CRASHING IN. [BUT BEARD SAID HER WORLD KEPT CRASHING. AFTER PARKER LEFT AND THEY FILED FOR DIVORCE - AND DESCRIBED ANOTHER NIGHT MONTHS LATER WHEN PARKER VIOLENTLY ATTACKED HER.] HE CAME TO THE COUCH. HE GOT ON TOP OF ME AND HE HELD ME DOWN AND HE CHOKED ME...
HE ALSO PULLED OUT HIS REVOLVER AND HELD IT TO MY HEAD AND TOLD ME IF MY DAUGHTER WASN'T IN THE OTHER ROOM ASLEEP HE WOULD BLOW MY BRAINS ALL OVER THE WALL. [BEARD SAID HE LEFT SOON AFTER, BUT FIRST HE MADE A CLEAR THREAT.]
HE TOLD ME THAT HE WOULD KILL ME AND THAT I COULD TRUST HIM WHEN HE TOLD ME THAT HE KNEW HOW TO DO IT WITHOUT GETTING CAUGHT, AND THEY'D NEVER BE ABLE TO FIND MY BODY...
THERESA PARKER'S FORMER SISTER IN LAW, TABITHA THOMAS:
HE TOLD ME, HE SAID, I WILL KILL YOU, I WILL BURY YOU, AND NOBODY WILL EVER FIND YOU.
I WILL KILL YOUR KIDS, BURY THEM, AND NO ONE WILL EVER FIND THEM.
I WILL BURY YOUR HUSBAND, AND BURY HIM, AND NO ONE WILL FIND HIM. AND HE PROCEEDED TO SAY, I'VE KILLED FOUR AND I'M NOT SCARED TO KILL AGAIN...
[NOTE: City & Police officials met in 1989 to discuss taking action on Parker for the brutal domestic violence against Keila Beard but nothing happened. So Parker maintained his shiny badge and public reputation - giving women in his future, including Theresa, no indication of what they were about to encounter. A $75 MILLION DOLLAR WRONGFUL DEATH LAWSUIT IS CALLED FOR.]
SAM PARKER'S EX-WIFE TESTIFIES
Aug 26, 2009
[Excerpts] In the eighth day of Sam Parker's murder trial, his second wife, Keila Beard takes the stand... Beard says on her birthday later that year, Parker told her he was leaving. She says after he had moved out and they were going through the divorce, he came over one night and came in to her house in a violent manner. She says he, "came to the couch, got on top of my and held me down, he was choking me." But, Beard says, it didn't end there. "He also pulled out a revolver and put it to my head and told me if my daughter wasn't in the other room asleep he would blow my brains all over the wall. I was trying to let go but he's a lot stronger than me so I didn't have much luck with that, but it happened real quick. It was almost like something snapped and just not the same person I married." Beard says Parker then made a scary statement. "He told me he would kill me and that I trust him when he told me he knew how to do it and not get caught and no one would ever find my body"... Earlier Wednesday morning, the prosecution called several of Teresa's friends and co-workers to the stand. Christina Hicks worked under Teresa at the 911 Center for 8 years. She said, "Teresa was a good, kind classy lady. She said Teresa wasn't upset with Parker, but just wanted out of the marriage. "She said she couldn't take it much longer, she was going to move to Florida." [Full article here]
VIDEO: DAY 9 - THERESA PARKER'S SISTERS TESTIFY OF ABUSE
PARKER MARRIAGE TROUBLED LONG BEFORE THERESA'S DISAPPEARANCE, FAMILY TESTIFIES
by Judy Frank
posted August 27, 2009
[Excerpts] [Theresa's sister] Hilda Wilson recalled an incident in 2002 in which her Mrs. Parker came home to find her husband "had thrown all her things out in the yard... Theresa was crying and very upset... She told me Sam accused her of having an affair with one of her co-workers. She said he was just uncontrollable... There was an altercation, and 911 was called." Her teenage daughter, Ashton, was with Mrs. Parker during that incident, Mrs. Wilson recalled, and she, too, was terrified. Afraid to go home, "Theresa stayed at my house that night," Mrs. Wilson noted. The incident scared her so badly that she no longer would allow her children to go and spend the night at Mrs. Parker's home, she testified. She and Theresa "had a falling over that," she recalled with a little sob, "and for a while they stopped speaking to each other. A year later, after she and her family had moved to Florida, Sam and Theresa came down for a visit, Mrs. Wilson told the jury. The Parkers went out together one night, she said, and Sam Parker got involved in an altercation at a restaurant. "It embarrassed Theresa," Mrs. Wilson said, "and she went on out to their car... Sam followed her... He pulled out a gun and fired it... He told her he was going to handcuff himself to her and blow his brains out." Police were called, she noted, and Parker was taken to a mental hospital... For a couple of weeks after that, she said, Mrs. Parker stayed in Florida with her and her family rather than return home to Lafayette. But then "she ran out of (leave time) from her work... she had to go back to work." By that time Parker had already been released from the hospital and returned home, Mrs. Wilson said, and he pressured his wife to come home by threatening her beloved cats and dogs. "She loved her pets... She took in all the strays... Sam called and left a message saying if she didn't get back home he would hang her pets in trees, one by one, and slit their throats and watch them bleed to death." Eventually, she said, Mrs. Parker decided to return home... [Full article here]
VIDEO: DAY 10 - DEFENSE REQUESTS DISMISSAL & SHERIFF KNEW OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND DID NOTHING
[WILSON SAID, WILSON SAID, WILSON SAID]
The Walker County Messenger
By Josh O'Bryant
[Excerpts] ...On Thursday [August 27th], public defender Dunn’s first witness was Walker County Sheriff Steve Wilson... Dunn asked Wilson about an April 16, 2006, meeting he had with Theresa Parker, along with the late LaFayette police chief Charles “Dino” Richardson. Wilson said the meeting lasted about 45 minutes... Dunn asked Wilson if he took any action towards Sam and Wilson said that he did not. District attorney Patterson then began to cross-examine Wilson... Wilson said that Theresa re-affirmed the events that took place with Sam being abusive to her and Theresa said that Sam “started on her” and that as she was calling 911 for assistance, Sam put her in a bear hug, threw her cell phone down and pulled out his gun and put the gun to one of her pets and said, “Do you want me to shoot the pets?” Wilson said Theresa told him that she did not want Sam arrested, because he would loose his job... Theresa told Wilson that Sam drinks everyday and goes through character changes. Wilson said Theresa told him that Sam controls her every action and that he was once admitted to the Bay Hospital in Panama City for mental issues and was prescribed Zoloft... [Full article here]
VIDEO: DAY 12 - JURY SPLIT 8-4
JURY REACHES PARKER VERDICTS, BUT NOT ON MURDER CHARGE
WTVC - John Madewell
September 01, 2009 5:17 PM
[Excerpts] The jury in the Sam Parker murder trial have apparently reached decisions in three charges against Sam Parker, but they have not reached a decision on the murder charge against him... The jury forewoman told the court they are presently split 8-4 on the murder charge. As for the charges of "making false statements," "computer invasion of privacy" and "violation of oath of office," the jury vote was 12-0, however they did not say if those votes were for "Guilty" or "Not Guilty... [Full article here]
VIDEO: DAY 14 - GUILTY - JUDGE PRESSED JURY TO REACH A VERDICT
PARKER JURY GIVEN "DYNAMITE" CHARGE
September 03, 2009 1:24 PM
[Excerpts] Judge Jon "Bo" Wood gave Sam Parker's jury what's commonly known as the "dynamite" charge at about 1:00 this afternoon. The "dynamite," or Allen charge as it is officially known, is designed to prompt the jury into action. Judge Wood gave gentle encouragement to the six men and six women deciding this case. He pointed out the case was exhaustively argued from each side and that the jury "should not be advocates for either side." After explaining the charge to the jury, Judge Wood sent them back to the deliberation room. They are approaching 22 hours of total deliberation... Multiple witnesses came up in this trial testifying they heard Sam Parker say he "could kill someone and bury the body where no one would ever find it"...
SAM PARKER HAS DARKENED THE LIVES OF SO MANY BECAUSE THE SHERIFF, POLICE CHIEFS, SHERIFFS, AND CITY SEATS OF POWER NEVER STOPPED HIM. IT WAS KNOWN AND DISCUSSED AT LEAST AS FAR BACK AS 1989. WHAT NOW?
LET ALL THIS GRIEF ROLL ITSELF INTO AN ONGOING LEGACY FOR THERESA IN BEHALF OF REAL CHANGE, PAID FOR ALREADY WITH BLOOD AND TEARS.
Previous entries on the blog:
- [GA] Reward offered for finding officer's wife, 911 dispatcher Theresa Parker
- [GA] Eddie's here from the UK to help find Theresa Parker
- [GA] Theresa Parker & OTHER missing police officer's wives
- What it sounds like when their women are missing
- [GA] Fired Sgt Parker gives 2nd interview - 9 months after Theresa vanished
- [GA] Police Sgt. Parker 's wife Theresa disappeared 9 months ago
- [GA] Mom of missing cop's wife Theresa Parker
- [GA] FINALLY! Fired Sgt Parker arrested for murder of Theresa
- [GA] Others were afraid of missing-Theresa Parker's Police Sgt. husband
- [GA] Theresa, wife of Sgt. Parker, disappeared 1 year ago
- [GA] The sad search continues for Theresa, wife of fired Sgt. Parker
- [GA] Fired LaFayette Police Sgt. Parker's wife Theresa has been missing 14 months today
- [GA] Fired Police Sgt. Parker finally indicted for murdering wife , dispatcher Theresa
- [GA] Fired Sgt. Parker's murder-of-wife-Theresa case moving slowly
- [Ga] Wife-Murder Suspect, Ex-Police Sgt. Sam Parker, Denied Bond
- [GA] Overview: Fired Police Sgt. Sam Parker's murder-of-Theresa pretrial hearings argue what evidence will be allowed.
- [GA] Evidence decided for fired Police Sgt. Sam Parker's murder-of-wife-Theresa trial
- The Truth of what happened to Theresa Parker
- [GA] Wow! And it was only day ONE of the Sgt.-Sam-Parker-murder-of-wife-Theresa trial
- [GA] Ex Police Sgt. Sam Parker murder trial day 2
- [GA] DA: Ex-LaFayette Police Sgt. Sam Parker "is a cockroach who runs when you turn the lights on."