Man convicted for 2019 Opp murder
COVINGTON COUNTY, Ala. (WTVY) - A Covington County jury has convicted Anthony James “AJ” Siler Jr. for the July 2019 death of Michael Devone Davis.
Siler, 50, from Opp was found guilty of Murder and Abuse of a Corpse for the shooting of 44-year-old Davis.
The four man, eight woman jury deliberated for about an hour before returning its verdict, according to a press release.
Assistant District Attorney Nikki Stephens and District Attorney Walt Merrell tried the case for the State. Evidence they presented showed that on July 15, 2019, Siler had several interactions with Davis near a trailer park in Opp.
According to eye witnesses who testified during the trial, these interactions became more and more intense. One witness described Siler banging on the dashboard of a car before Siler told the witness he would kill Davis. Two other witnesses explained that they saw Siler swerve his car towards Davis as he walked down the toad. which Siler dismissed as just trying to avoid a pothole.
However, those witnesses stated that they saw Siler leave his vehicle and approach Davis with a shotgun before shooting Davis at point blank range. Both witnesses confirmed that Davis was unarmed at the time of the altercation.
The press release from the 22nd Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s office states that one of the witnesses was told to load the body into Siler’s car or they and their family would be killed. Siler then drove to Florala where he dumped Davis’ body in a swampy pond area. Siler confessed to that he abandoned his car and the gun at a vacant home and tried to return to the crime scene to retrieve his phone and the shell casing.
Siler was taken into custody the following morning.
Among the testimony, Andalusia Police Department Captain Brett Homes spoke about the interview he had with Siler, explaining that Siler admitted to the murder but claimed self-defense.
Siler took the stand in his own defense with his story changing from that which he initially told police. He claimed that Davis approached him with a stick and a knife before testifying that Davis dropped both weapons when Siler confronted him with a gun but he shot him anyway. Siler admitted that the most important thing to him was what the “streets” thought of him.
Stephens said, ““Perhaps more than with any other defendant I’ve prosecuted, AJ Siler showed absolutely no remorse for killing Michael. He shot an unarmed man because he had made his mind up to do so, and even told police that. His self-defense claim was bogus, and the lies continued to grow even during the trial with him on the stand. Society deserves to be protected from people like him.”
The prosecution thanked everyone who helped with the investigation and the trial.
Siler will be sentenced in June 2023. Because of five previous felony convictions, he faces a mandatory sentence of life without the possibility of parole on the murder charge and a 15 year sentence for the Abuse of a Corpse charge. He remains in the Covington County Jail.
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