The Office of State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that on October 2, 2018, Circuit Judge Michael Overstreet sentenced Demarcus Giddens to life in prison for the August 20, 2017, murder of 16 year old Jason Ian Price. On September 27, 2018, a Bay County jury found Giddens guilty as charged of the crimes of First Degree Murder and Attempted Robbery. Assistant State Attorneys Bob Sombathy and Cord Grimes presented evidence that Giddens pulled out an AK-47 pistol gripped assault weapon and attempted to rob John Pyle during an attempted marijuana purchase between Pyle and Giddens. Ian Price was sitting in a nearby truck in the CVS parking lot when he saw Arnold High School classmate John Pyle being assaulted by Giddens. Ian Price ran from his truck in an effort to help Pyle when Giddens turned around and shot Price in the chest. Giddens fled the scene but was quickly apprehended at the nearby Fairfield Inn parking lot by the Bay County Sheriff’s Office. Giddens, who was 21 years old at the time, traveled down from Auburn, Alabama with several co-defendants. Giddens testified that he acted in self-defense, but Assistant State Attorney Bob Sombathy highlighted several flaws in Giddens’ story during the pivotal cross examination of Giddens. Giddens had been convicted of four felonies in Alabama prior to this charge.
This case was investigated by the Bay County Sheriff’s Office and assigned to Investigator Christian Williams, case agent.
For additional information, contact Chief Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford.