FLINT (WWJ/AP) – A 21-year-old Detroit man has been convicted of first-degree murder in the 2012 fatal shootings of three people during a Flint house party.
The verdict was returned Wednesday for James P. Simpkins, who faces mandatory life in prison without parole when sentenced Feb. 6. Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said in a statement he’s pleased with the outcome of the case.
The shootings occurred around 3:30 a.m. on July 18, 2012 during a party at a home on Frazer and Tacken streets. Leyton said shots rang out after one of the victims “began to harass, taunt, tease Mr. Simpkins by saying, ‘You’re crazy’ or something like that.'”
Those killed in the attack were identified as Simpkins’s 21-year-old brother Anthony, his brother’s 21-year-old girlfriend Erica Billingsly, and 36-year-old Bobby Jackson. Police said Anthony Simpkins and Billingsly were killed instantly. Jackson initially survived the shooting but Simpkins stomped on his head until he died, the Flint Journal reported.
A surviving victim — a 20-year-old Detroit woman who escaped through a window after being shot four times and strangled — helped lead police to Simpkins, who actually called police about five hours after the shooting. On his 911 call, Simpkins reported that he had been assaulted and his friends shot by a man in a black ski mask. He was arrested hours later.
Simpkins was also convicted of felony firearm, assault with intent to commit sexual penetration and assault with intent to murder, all charges relating to the surviving victim.
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