Valdosta shooter sentenced to life in prison

| February 10, 2017

VALDOSTA – The Valdosta man charged in the August 2015 shooting death of Damaria Hill was found guilty by a Lowndes County jury Thursday and sentenced to life in prison.

Eric Simmons was found guily of felony murder, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, according to reports.

Simmons was sentenced to life in prison plus five years, reports stated.

On August 17, 2015, Damaria Hill, 18, suffered a gunshot wound to the head at a residence in the 2300 block of Caldwell Drive. She later died at a Florida hospital.

During his testimony, Simmons claimed Hill also had a gun and that the shooting was in self-defense. However, eyewitnesses testified that Simmons was the only person with a weapon and was yelling about “wanting to kill someone,” reports the Valdosta Daily Times.

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