Lacy Convicted of Sex Crimes Involving Child, Faces Life Sentence

Press Release

The Office of State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that on October 22, 2019, a Bay County jury convicted William Douglas Lacy, III, of three counts of Lewd or Lascivious Molestation, three counts of Possession or Control of a Material including Sexual Conduct of a Child, and three counts of Promoting Sexual Performance by a Child.

Evidence presented at trial proved that in Nov 2017, photographs of the victim with glow in the dark paint on her nude body were discovered on the Defendant’s cell phone.  Bay County Sheriff’s Office investigators interviewed the Defendant who told them he would get sexually excited when the victim would sit on his lap.  The Defendant told investigators that he had painted the child, took nude photographs of her and inserted his finger into her vagina on two occasions.  This information corroborated the victim’s disclosures to the Child Protection Team.

This case was investigated by Inv. Matthew Cutcher and assisted by Sgt. David Higgins and Captain Jason Daffin with the Bay County Sheriff’s Office.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant State Attorney Barbara Beasley and Assistant State Attorney Ian Gray.  Sentencing is scheduled before Circuit Judge Ana Maria Garcia on December 3, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. and the Defendant is facing the possibility of life in prison and being designated a sexual predator.

For additional information, contact Chief Assistant Attorney Larry Basford.

Hathaway Convicted of Second Degree Murder, Burglary with Assault or Battery, Kidnapping, and Robbery

Press Release

The Office of State Attorney Glenn Hess releases the following information:

On October 18, 2019, a Calhoun County jury in Blountstown, Florida convicted James Michael Hathaway of Second Degree Murder (Victim over 65 Years of Age), Burglary with Assault or Battery, Kidnapping and Robbery.  Sometime between December 30th and December 31st, 2018 the victim, a 79-year-old Calhoun County resident, was assaulted in his home, bound with zip-ties, electrical cords, and metal binding, beaten severely, his property stolen, and he was left for dead.  The victim was discovered on December 31, 2018 by a family member and was life flighted to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries from the brutal attack.  Assistant State Attorney William Wright called 19 witnesses to prove to the jury the chain of events that occurred and the evidence of those crimes, proving to the jury that James Michael Hathaway committed or assisted in committing those crimes.  The case was investigated by the Calhoun County Sheriff s Office with the assistance of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.  Judge Shonna Young Gay scheduled a sentencing date for November 20, 2019. James Michael Hathaway faces up to life in prison based on his conviction.

Please contact Chief Assistant Attorney Larry Basford with any questions.

Croft Sentenced to 60 Years for Sexual Battery on a Physically Helpless Victim

Press Release

The Office of State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that on October 14, 2019, Chief Circuit Judge Christopher Patterson sentenced Jermaine Croft to a total of 60 years of imprisonment for two counts of Sexual Battery on a Physically Helpless Victim.

Croft was found guilty of the charges by a Bay County jury on September 26, 2019.  Evidence presented at trial proved that the victim and her friends went out for a celebration in Panama City Beach.  The victim planned to stay the night with her best friend.  Croft, who had given a fake last name of Bryant, was dating the victim’s best friend.  After a night out drinking, the three returned to the friend’s residence where the friend took care of the victim and helped her to bed, because she was extremely intoxicated.  Afterwards Croft left the residence and later returned from a bar.  Croft then forcibly raped the victim as she was asleep and unconscious.  The victim attempted to fight Croft off but was choked, bitten, and slammed into the bed numerous times.

Croft is a six-time convicted felon.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant State Attorneys Peter Overstreet and Brittany Adams.

For additional information, contact Chief Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford.

Bell Sentenced to 10 Years as a Habitual Felony Offender

Press Release

The Office of State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that on October 14, 2019, Chief Circuit Judge Christopher Patterson sentenced Joseph Darian Bell to 10 years of imprisonment after finding Bell to be a Habitual Felony Offender.

On September 25, 2019, Bell was convicted of Sale of Heroin by a Bay County jury.  The evidence presented at trial established that the defendant sold to a confidential informant from the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms.  The Bay County Sheriff’s Office assisted and utilized undercover recording equipment to record the sale of the heroin to the confidential informant.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant State Attorney Peter Overstreet.

For additional information, contact Chief Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford.

Inmate Broxton Gets 28 Years For Aggravated Battery On A Correctional Officer

Press Release

The office of State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that on Tuesday, October 8, 2019, Circuit Judge Ana Maria Garcia sentenced Bryan Broxton to 28 years of imprisonment for Aggravated Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer and Resisting Officer with Violence, following a guilty verdict on September 20, 2019.

Evidence presented at trial proved that while trying to detain inmate Bryan Broxton at the Bay County Jail, the Defendant violently resisted being restrained by pulling away from Cpl. William Stoudt and subsequently throwing him over his shoulder, driving him into the concrete floor. Cpl. Stoudt received a severe concussion and permanent neck injuries causing permanent disability. The case was prosecuted by Assistant State Attorneys Nichole Pieper and Cord Grimes and investigated by Inv. Marc Bailey with the Bay County Sheriff’s Office.

For additional information, contact Chief Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford.

Lee Sentenced to 15 Years for Attempted Manslaughter by Act

Press Release

The Office of State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that on Tuesday, October 8, 2019, Circuit Judge Ana Maria Garcia sentenced Jeremy Javon Lee to 15 years of imprisonment for Attempted Manslaughter by Act, following a jury verdict of guilty on September 17, 2019.

Evidence presented at trial proved that on October 21, 2018, the Defendant was invited into the victim’s home, pulled a gun out of a backpack and shot the victim in the chest. The Defendant then fled the scene, hid in the wooded area behind the victim’s apartment for several hours while he disposed of the firearm, his hoodie, pants and backpack. The Defendant lied to his family, telling them he wasn’t even in Panama City and didn’t shoot anyone. At trial, he testified that the shooting was an accident. The victim suffered great bodily harm as the bullet traveled from the entry wound in his chest, through his abdomen into his right hip.

This case was investigated by Det. Kristian Shaw at the Panama City Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant State Attorneys Barbara Beasley and Amanda Kincaid.

For additional information, contact Chief Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford.

Ian Gray Joins the State Attorney’s Office

Press Release

The Office of State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that on October 1, 2019, Ian Gray joined the State Attorney’s Office as an Assistant State Attorney in the misdemeanor division of the Bay County office.  Mr. Gray is a graduate of the University of Florida Levin College of Law.  Prior to attending law school, he earned an Associate’s degree from Santa Fe College and a Bachelor’s degree in Criminology from the University of Florida.

Mr. Gray previously worked as an attorney with Gray Law, PLLC, and James F. Gray P.A. in Gainesville.  He also previously served in the United States Marine Corps.  We welcome Mr. Gray to the team!

For additional information, contact Chief Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford.

Harper Convicted of Felon in Possession of a Firearm and Possession of a Short-Barreled Shotgun

Press Release

The Office of the State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that on Thursday, September 26, 2019, a six-member jury found Michael Anthony Harper guilty of Felon in Possession of a Firearm, and Possession of Short-Barreled Shotgun.

On November 26, 2018, Bay County Sheriff’s deputies executed a search warrant on 5604 Hathaway Road.  A search of the residence resulted in the recovery of an illegally modified short-barreled shotgun found in Harper’s locked bedroom.  At trial, the State presented evidence establishing that Harper was in possession of the firearm and that he was a convicted felon.

The Honorable Judge Dedee Costello classified the defendant as a Habitual Felony Offender and sentenced Harper to five (5) years in the Department of Corrections.

The case was investigated by Jeremy Head of the Bay County Sheriff’s Office and prosecuted by Assistant State Attorneys Lawrence Gill and Lynelle Dowe.

For additional information, contact Chief Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford.

Brittany Adams Sworn as an Assistant State Attorney

Press Release

The Office of State Attorney Glenn Hess announces that Brittany Adams was sworn in as an Assistant State Attorney by State Attorney Glenn Hess on September 26, 2019.  Mrs. Adams joined the State Attorney’s Office in August.  She was sworn in as an attorney by County Judge Shane Vann on September 24 after passing the Florida Bar exam.

Mrs. Adams, a Bay County native, is a 2019 graduate of the University of Washington School of Law in Seattle, Washington.  She completed the first year of her law degree at the George Washington University Law School in Washington, D.C.  Prior to attending law school, Mrs. Adams earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and Political Science from the University of Florida.

Mrs. Adams has worked as a Legal Intern for the U.S. Navy Judge Advocate General Corps, Region Legal Service Office Northwest; the U.S. Coast Guard, CGJAG 13th District Legal Office; and the Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  She has also worked as a Clinic Student at the Washington Innocence Project.  We welcome Mrs. Adams to the team!

For additional information, contact Chief Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford.