FR O M T HE HO T SPRING COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT [NO.
30CR-15-181], HONORABLE CHRIS E WILLIAMS, JUDGE.
Gregory K. Crain, for appellant.
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Rebecca Kane, Ass't
Att'y Gen., for appellee.
LARRYD. VAUGHT, JUDGE.
Lee Crews appeals the sentencing order entered by the Hot
Spring County Circuit Court, finding him guilty of
first-degree murder and sentencing him to forty years'
imprisonment with a consecutive term of fifteen years'
imprisonment for a firearm enhancement. On appeal, Jimmy
argues that the circuit court erred in (1) refusing to give
the justification jury instruction; (2) refusing to give the
extreme-emotional-disturbance-manslaughter jury instruction;
and (3) denying his motion for a directed
verdict. We affirm.
record establishes that Jimmy lived in a camper on property
owned by his niece, Loni DiGiacomo, and her husband, Scott,
located on Camp Road near Bismarck, Arkansas. Loni, Scott,
and their children lived in a separate home-a trailer with a
connected workshop-approximately 100 feet from the camper
where Jimmy lived. The victim, Ken Baum, also lived on Camp
Road and owned two rental properties nearby. Ken was a friend
of Scott's, but Ken and Jimmy did not like each other.
afternoon of September 19, 2015, Ken went to the DiGiacomo
home and asked Loni if she knew whether Jimmy had gone to one
of Ken's tenant's trailers and asked to take a
shower. Ken asked, as he had before, if she and Scott would
order Jimmy to move off their property. Loni said no because
Jimmy had no place to go. Ken left but returned later that
afternoon to discuss the matter with Loni and Scott. Ken was
persistent about Jimmy moving, and Loni again said no. Loni
said Ken was frustrated and left.
Jimmy came home that evening, Scott told Jimmy about
Ken's allegation. Jimmy became very upset and denied
having been on Ken's property. At Scott's request,
Ken agreed to ask his tenant to meet him, Scott, and Jimmy at
the end of Ken's driveway on Camp Road to resolve the
matter. At the beginning of the meeting, according to Scott,
Ken and Jimmy verbally confronted each other for a few
seconds before both men backed away without touching each
other. Shortly thereafter, the tenant and an unidentified man
arrived in a vehicle. Scott testified that Jimmy stuck his
head into the car so the tenant could see his face, and she
tentatively identified Jimmy as the man who had come to her
trailer. Still upset, Jimmy left and headed to the DiGiacomo
home. Loni testified that when Jimmy returned, he was
frantic, scared, and very upset with Scott, calling him a
liar, a child molester, and a rapist. Jimmy asked Loni to
call the police on Scott, but she refused. Loni said that
Jimmy did not say anything about Ken. Loni did not see any
bruises, blood, red marks, or scratches on Jimmy.
arrived home a few minutes after Jimmy. Scott said that Jimmy
was very mad at him for letting Ken treat Jimmy poorly. Scott
and Jimmy were arguing in the workshop for about four minutes
when Ken entered, leaned against a table with his arms
crossed against his chest, and glared at Jimmy. As Ken
glared, Jimmy started pacing and asked Ken why he was doing
this to him. Scott described the tension in the workshop as
"an environment of terror." After a few minutes,
Jimmy turned around, and said to Scott, "I'll show
you what I'll do, " and he left. Scott stated that
after two or three minutes, he heard Jimmy storm back into
the workshop, say "All right, mother fucker, " and
fire a shotgun at Ken. Jimmy fled but surrendered the next
diagram drawn by a law-enforcement officer showed that Jimmy
was approximately twenty feet from Ken when he shot him. The
medical examiner testified that the victim sustained
"massive injury to both lungs and massive shredding
injury to the heart." The medical examiner also stated
that the barrel of the shotgun was close enough to the victim
to leave paper wadding from the shotgun shell on the
testified that before Ken was shot, he never said a word,
never pulled out a gun, and never advanced toward Jimmy. Loni
testified that when Ken entered the workshop, he was not
screaming or acting out and that she did not see him with a
gun. Law-enforcement officers testified that they did not
find a firearm on Ken at the crime scene and that they did
not find any evidence consistent with Jimmy's claim of
trial, Jimmy testified that Ken had made allegations against
him for years and that Ken had pointed his Derringer pistol,
which he was known to carry, at Jimmy twice before the night
of the shooting. According to Jimmy's testimony, when he
and Scott walked down to Ken's driveway, Ken shoved, hit,
and scratched Jimmy. Jimmy further stated that when Ken
entered the workshop, he pointed his Derringer pistol at
Jimmy. Jimmy said he was scared, no one would help him, no
one would call the police, he felt trapped, and he panicked.
He said that he left the workshop, got the shotgun from his
camper, returned to the workshop, and shot Ken in
rebuttal, Ken's daughter, Sherry Caldwell, testified that
within hours of the shooting, she located Ken's Derringer
pistol in his home between the mattresses of his bed.