Joyce Garrard Convicted
Joyce Garrard might spend the rest of her life in prison for forcing her 9-year-old granddaughter Savannah Hardin to run for three hours while carrying wood because she ate chocolate candy bars.
An Etowah County jury has recommended life in prison without parole for Joyce Hardin Garrard in the death of Savannah Hardin.
The jury vote was five for death and seven for life in prison.
Judge William “Billy” Ogletree set a sentencing hearing for May 11 at 2 p.m.
The jury, composed of 8 men and 4 women, with two male alternates, went back to begin considering its recommendation at 11:20 a.m. today.
Ogletree read the recommendation in a crowded courtroom about 3:15 p.m. Garrard gave no reaction.
Prosecutors said Garrard forced the child to run for more than three hours as punishment for lying about eating candy bars on February 17, 2012.
Savannah collapsed and died days later in a Birmingham hospital. The jury found her guilty of capital murder last Friday after about three-and-a-half hours of deliberation.
Attorneys for both sides have been silent throughout a gag order imposed by the court, and today was their first chance to comment on the case.
Terrible. Bye beyotch!