On Friday the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed the murder conviction of Benjamin Cordell Waddle. Waddle was convicted in Limestone County Circuit Court on August 2018 for the murder of Michael Peoples.
Waddle is 30 years old and lives in Madison.
According to the evidence at trial, on August 3, 2015, Waddle and Peoples visited the home of Thomas Smith to rehearse a rap music act.
Waddle and Peoples reportedly got into an argument in Smith’s den, which culminated with Waddle pulling a large, military style knife from a sheath on his side. Waddle then stabbed Peoples in the back, shoulder, and hand. Peoples died from those wounds a short time later.
Waddle admits that he stabbed Peoples; but claimed at trial that he acted in self-defense.
The D.A.s in Limestone County that prosecuted the case argued however that the evidence shows that Waddle stabbed Peoples in the back; and that he did not see Peoples with a weapon. The prosecutors argue that Peoples had not made an overt threatening action toward Waddle.
Limestone County District Attorney Brian C.T. Jones’ office prosecuted this case and obtained a guilty verdict. Waddle was sentenced to 40 years’ imprisonment for his conviction.
Waddle asked the state appellate court to have his conviction reversed on appeal.
The Attorney General’s Criminal Appeals Division handled the case during the appeals process, arguing for the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals to affirm the conviction. The Court did so in a decision issued Friday, September 13.
Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall (R) commended Assistant Attorney General Stephen Dodd for his successful work on this case.