Man who fought, attacked deputy sentenced to 25 years

A man who attacked a deputy and later said he “wanted to beat him to death,” was deemed a Habitual Felony Offender Friday and sentenced to 25 years in prison, State Attorney Larry Basford announced.

Circuit Court Judge Devin Collier sentenced Jourdan Daniel Parks, 36, of Panama City, for Fleeing to Elude a Law Enforcement Officer, Resisting an Officer with Violence, and two counts of Battery on a Law Enforcement officer.

Assistant State Attorney Jacob Cook had already picked a jury to hear the charges against the defendant on March 21, but on the eve of trial the Defendant changed his mind and entered an “open plea,” meaning the Defendant admitted guilt and the judge would determine the sentence, and the jury was dismissed.

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At the defendant’s Habitual Felony Offender (HFO) and sentencing hearing Friday, Prosecutor Cook proved that the defendant qualified as an HFO through expert fingerprint testimony, with previous convictions of Aggravated Battery, Resisting Arrest with Violence, and Driving While License Suspended or Revoked (Habitual Offender). The defendant has a lengthy criminal history dating back to 2005. Designation as an HFO doubled the maximum penalty the defendant faced on the most serious charge from 15 years to a maximum of 30 years.

Cook presented testimony at sentencing regarding the severity of the crime against Bay County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Thomas Evans, as well as a phone call the defendant made from jail where he was recorded saying, “You should of seen the fear in his eyes when I picked him up and slammed him on that table.” Cook also presented video of the attack, shot by a witness.

The evidence showed that Deputy Evans responded to a complaint June 25, 2020. The defendant was spotted in a vehicle but fled from the deputy at a high rate of speed before exiting his vehicle and running into a residence, the evidence showed.

The pursuing deputy found the defendant trying to hide in a pantry. The defendant exited the pantry and attacked the deputy. During the attack, evidence showed, the deputy was slammed onto a table and choked before he and Deputy Kip McKenzie were able to subdue the defendant.

Basford thanked the Sheriff’s Office for its work on the case, and Deputy Evans for his efforts.

For more information, contact Mike Cazalas at, or call 850-381-7454.