The state Court of Appeals again upholds a 27-year-old Columbus man’s 32-year sentence for an aggravated assault that left one man blind.
Joel Dudley Jones, who goes by the street name “Blue,” was found guilty on Aug. 25, 2014, in Lowndes County Circuit Court of two counts of aggravated assault for shooting Zach Johnson and Tomarcas Thomas during a confrontation near Ash Street in Columbus on July 14, 2012. Johnson was left blind after being shot in the face with a shotgun. Thomas, who was standing behind Johnson, was injured in the face but recovered.
Jones claimed someone who was with him actually fired the shot and that Judge Jim Kitchens erred when he gave the jury a jury instruction that talked about the liability of an accomplice and other instructions during the trial.
Kitchens sentenced Jones to a total of 32 years on the two charges.
The Court of Appeals ruled last year that no mistake was made and affirmed that ruling last week.
During his trial, Jones admitted he was among the group that took part in the shooting, which stemmed from Jones’s disagreement with another man who owed him money.