December 19, 2014
State of Alabama
from Mobile Circuit Court. (CC-12-3873).
Appellant: Lisa Elaine Bumpers, Mobile.
Appellee: Luther Strange, Atty. Gen., and Audrey K. Jordan,
Asst. Atty. Gen.
Presiding Judge. Welch, Kellum, Burke, and Joiner, JJ.,
WINDOM, Presiding Judge.
Amison appeals his convictions for two counts of felony
murder, see § 13A-6-2(a)(3), Ala. Code 1975, and his
resulting sentences of 32 years in prison. Amison's
sentences were ordered to run concurrently.
November 22, 2011, Amison and his accomplice, Broderick
Brown, robbed and killed Sam Richardson in Richardson's
barbershop. Amison was indicted for two counts of
capital murder for killing Sam Richardson during the course
of a robbery and during the course of a burglary. See §
§ 13A-5-40(a)(2) and (a)(4), Ala. Code 1975. On both
counts, the jury found Amison guilty of the lesser-included
offense of felony murder. The circuit court adjudicated
Amison guilty of two counts of felony-murder and sentenced
him to two concurrent terms of 32 years in prison.
appeal, both Amison and the State argue that Amison's two
felony-murder convictions for killing Richardson violate the
Double Jeopardy Clause of the Fifth Amendment to the
Constitution of the United States. This Court agrees.
Carlisle v. State, 963 So.2d 170 (Ala.Crim.App. 2006),
this Court explained:
" In Ex parte Rice, 766 So.2d 143 (Ala. 1999),
the Alabama Supreme Court held that § 13A-6-2(a)(3),
Ala. Code 1975, creates a single offense, even though it
provides alternative methods of proving the offense. The
supreme court also held that double jeopardy principles
prohibit multiple convictions and multiple sentences for
felony-murder if the convictions and sentences arise from a
killing. In this case, the appellant was convicted of one
count of felony-murder during a robbery and one count of
felony-murder during the commission of a felony that was
clearly dangerous to human life -- discharging a firearm into
an occupied vehicle. Both convictions arose from the murder
of Speigner. Therefore, he could not properly be convicted of
and sentenced for two counts of felony-murder. The trial
court sentenced the appellant to serve concurrent terms of
life in prison. However, in Rice, the supreme court held:
" 'We note that merely ordering that Rice's
sentences run concurrently is not a constitutionally
acceptable option. The Supreme Court stated in Ball v.
United States, 470 U.S. 856, 864-65, 105 S.Ct. 1668, 84
L.Ed.2d 740 (1985):
" '" The remedy of ordering one of the
sentences to be served concurrently with the other cannot be
squared with Congress' intention. One of the convictions,
as well as its concurrent sentence, is unauthorized
punishment for a separate offense. See Missouri v.
Hunter, 459 U.S. 359, 368 [, 103 S.Ct. 673, 74 L.Ed.2d
" '" The second conviction, whose concomitant
sentence is served concurrently, does not evaporate simply
because of the concurrence of the sentence. The separate
conviction, apart from the concurrent sentence, has potential
adverse collateral consequences that may not be ignored. For
example, the presence of two convictions on the record may
delay the defendant's eligibility for parole or result in
an increased sentence under a recidivist statute for a future
offense. Moreover, the second conviction may be used to
impeach the defendant's credibility and certainly carries
the societal stigma accompanying any criminal conviction. See
Benton v. Maryland, 395 U.S. 784, 790-91[, 89 S.Ct.
2056, 23 L.Ed.2d 707] (1969); Sibron v. New York,
392 U.S. 40, 54-56 [, 88 S.Ct. 1889, 20 L.Ed.2d 917] (1968).
Thus, the second conviction, even if it results in no greater
sentence, is an impermissible punishment."
" 'See, also, Rolling v. State, [673 So.2d
812 (Ala.Crim.App. 1995)].
" 'Neither is it an acceptable option to merely
vacate one of Rice's convictions and its corresponding
sentence. The jury specifically found that Rice had violated
§ 13A-6-2(a)(3) in two different ways -- by
participating in a kidnapping and causing Taylor's death
and by participating in a robbery and causing Taylor's
death. Based on the record before us, an appellate
court's vacating one of Rice's convictions and its
corresponding sentence would have the effect, albeit
unintended, of nullifying a part of the jury's verdict.
We think the better approach is for the Court of Criminal
Appeals to remand the case to the trial court for the entry
of a new order -- an order that adjudges Rice guilty of
Taylor's murder and sentences him for that single
" Rice, 766 So.2d at 152-53."
Carlisle, 963 So.2d at 170-71; see also Brown v.
State, [Ms. CR-13-0083, Oct. 3, 2014] 171 So.3d 102, 110
two felony-murder convictions for killing Richardson cannot
stand under Carlisle, 963 So.2d at 170-71. Accordingly, this
Court remands this cause to the circuit court with directions
for that court to enter a new order adjudging Amison guilty
of one count of felony murder and
sentencing him for that single offense. The circuit court
shall take all necessary action to ensure due return to this
Court at the earliest possible time but no later than 42 days
after the release of this opinion.
Kellum, Burke, and Joiner, JJ., concur.
Amison does not challenge the sufficiency
of the evidence; therefore, a recitation of the facts is not