W.Va. man sentenced after fatally shooting victim who disrespected his grandmother

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun4,2024

FAYETTE COUNTY, W.Va. (TCD) — A judge has sentenced a 21-year-old man to life in prison for killing a man who behaved disrespectfully toward his grandmother.

Fayette County Prosecuting Attorney Anthony Ciliberti Jr. announced Thursday, May 30, that Circuit Judge Thomas Ewing handed down the sentence against Kayce Simms for the 2022 shooting death of 37-year-old Ashtin Owens. A jury convicted Simms in March of first-degree murder and use or presentment of a firearm during the commission of a felony.

He was sentenced to life for the first-degree murder charge and 10 years for the second. Simms will be eligible for parole after serving 17 years and six months.

According to prosecutors, on Nov. 21, 2022, law enforcement officials responded to a home and found Owens with two gunshot wounds. He was transported to a trauma center via helicopter and was later pronounced dead.

Further investigation revealed Owens had gotten into a dispute with Simms’ grandmother earlier in the day. According to West Virginia Metro News, the defendant’s grandmother posted about the fight on Facebook. Simms reportedly obtained a gun from an acquaintance and “went to Owens’ residence to confront Owens for disrespecting his grandmother.”

Simms entered the home, argued with the victim, and shot him twice before fleeing the scene. Multiple witnesses at Owens’ residence during the incident identified Simms as the shooter.

Simms has been in custody since his arrest on Dec. 2, 2022. According to the prosecuting attorney’s office, while incarcerated, Simms was reportedly written up for multiple violations, including the possession of a weapon, making threats to correction employees, and assault and battery on correction workers.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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