December 15, 2008
For more information, please contact
Michael Guest at (601) 825-1472
Madison and Rankin Counties’ District Attorney Michael Guest announced today that Eugene Palmer, Jr., received a 30-year sentence for armed robbery and aggravated assault through a plea agreement. Ten years will be suspended.
On June 7, 2007, Palmer and a co-defendant entered Stacie’s Boutique and Spa and were told by the victim that the business was closing for the evening. Palmer moved as if he were going to leave the business, but then turned back around displaying a weapon. He demanded that the victim give him her purse and threatened to kill her.
Palmer pushed the victim into the back of the business and a struggle began. During the struggle Palmer fired one shot missing the victim. Palmer took the victim’s purse and fled on foot through the woods. As the defendants were fleeing the scene Palmer fired another shot as he was leaving the building. Several witnesses heard the second shot and saw Palmer running from the scene.
The Rankin County Sheriff’s Department responded to the call and recovered two spent .32 caliber shell casings and also collected fingerprints. In addition, they interviewed several witnesses.
Law enforcement tuned to the media for assistance and received information from an individual who contacted Crime Stoppers that identified Palmer and his co-defendants. They were then able to secure a subpoena for Palmer’s cell phone records, leading them to the Gulf Coast fishing boat where he was employed.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Coast Guard took law enforcement to the boat, which was 45 minutes out in Coastal waters. Upon boarding the vessel and searching for almost an hour, they found Palmer hiding below deck next to the engine room. Palmer was arrested and later transported back to Rankin County.
Guest stated, “Palmer is one more violent criminal who has been successfully removed from our society. Because of the outstanding work of the Rankin County Sheriff’s Department and the assistance they received from the FBI and the United States Coast Guard, Palmer will now spend the next twenty years behind bars were he will no longer be able to intimidate, steal, and victimize others. “
His co-defendants are scheduled to go to trial in February 2009.
Palmer was previously convicted in Hinds County in 2003 for robbery.