Escape trial begins for Floyd

Published 8:45 am Wednesday, July 22, 2015

An Atmore man sentenced to die for the shooting death of his girlfriend in 2011 was again inside an Escambia County courtroom this month — this time on trial for a 2012 escape from the county jail.

However, it will be September before he returns to finish the trial.

Cedric Floyd was found guilty in 2013 of shooting Tina Jones three times after crashing through her bedroom window in 2011. Floyd’s three-week trial was described as the longest of its kind in county history.

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Floyd escaped from the Escambia County Detention Center in October 2012. Following a massive manhunt, Floyd was captured the next day in Pensacola, Fla.

On Monday, jury selections began in that case. Some 30 residents from all parts of the county were polled just after lunch by Judge Bert Rice.

District Attorney Steve Billy and assistant district attorney Eric Coale were to prosecute the case, while Chuck Johns and Kevin McKinley served as Floyd’s defense counsel.

Floyd was indicted in February 2013 on the escape charge; however, Billy said Tuesday that the trial was continued after Floyd “had issues” with his attorneys.

“(Because of it, Floyd’s attorneys) moved to withdraw, which was granted by Judge Rice,” Billy said. “The case was continued to September, and he will have another attorney appointed.”

During Floyd’s capital murder case, he fired his then-attorneys and represented himself. At the judge’s orders, the counsel remained with Floyd until the end of the trial to answer questions.

Brewton Standard publisher Stephanie Nelson wrote this story.