FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 27, 2014
AG ANNOUNCES DEATH SENTENCE FOR MURDER IN ESCAMBIA COUNTY
(MONTGOMERY)—Attorney General Luther Strange announced that an Escambia County man today was sentenced to death for the murder of a woman he had dated who was trying to escape the violent relationship. Cedric Jerome Floyd, 32, killed Tina Jones, also of Escambia County, in 2011.
Floyd was found guilty on October 7, 2013, by a jury in Escambia County Circuit Court following a three and a half week long trial. The Attorney General’s Office presented evidence that Floyd jumped through the bedroom window of the Jones’ home just after midnight on January 2, 2011. He shot her in the back as she was trying to flee and then fired two additional shots in execution-style. The slaying was motivated by the victim’s intention to end a violent and tumultuous off-and-on two-year dating relationship with the defendant. Only hours before the victim’s death, the defendant sent threatening cell phone messages to the victim saying “don’t make me send myself to prison,” and “ya’ll going to hate you ever met me.”
During the sentencing phase of the trial, the jury recommended a verdict of death by a vote of 11 to 1 after the prosecution had proved four aggravating circumstances: that the murder was committed by a defendant under a sentence of imprisonment, that the defendant had previously been convicted of another felony (in this case, first-degree rape) involving the use or threat of violence; that the murder was committed during the commission of a burglary, and that the murder was particularly heinous, atrocious, or cruel.
“This is a heartbreaking and appalling situation, in which the victim tried desperately to save herself and was viciously killed by someone who had threatened and abused her for years,” said Attorney General Strange. “If any case demands the death penalty, it is this, and today’s sentence is an important step to bring a measure of justice to Tina Jones and her family.”
Attorney General Strange commended Assistant Attorneys General Stephanie Billingslea, John Hensley and Ternisha Miles, and Paralegal Lori Arnold of his Criminal Trials Divisions; Victims Service Director Patty DeBortoli of his Office of Victim Assistance; and Special Agents of his Investigations Division. He also thanked the Atmore Police Department, the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, Michael Trotter with the Office of Prosecution Services, and Atmore Community Hospital.