Indictments in Colquitt Co. sex crimes

Stacey Bernard Sims

A Colquitt Co. man sentenced last year in the murders of six Tift County men and his alleged accomplice are indicted on charges related to the Colquitt Co. portion of the crime spree.

19-year-old Stacey Bernard Sims and 22-year-old Jamie Deamtrive Underwood were indicted on charges of rape, aggravated sodomy, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony. Those charges are related to a September 2008 home invasion in which a Norman Park woman was raped and forced to perform oral sex on the male invaders.

Sims and Underwood will have an initial arraignment in Colquitt County in October. Ramon Perez was shot in the face during the home invasion in Norman Park and suffered permanent severe injuries. Brenda Perez told the Tifton Gazette in 2006 that after her husband was shot the men raped her and then beat her husband with a guitar and baseball bat.

Underwood pleaded guilty last year in the Tift County murders and was sentenced to life without parole in the three home invasions in Tift County that left six Hispanic men dead in the one-night crime spree. Five of the men died from blunt trauma injuries from being beaten, while the sixth died from a gunshot wound.

Sims is awaiting the appointment of state legal representation for a trial after his initial two attorneys withdrew from the case, citing his inability to pay. They are accused in Colquitt County of forcing their way into the bedroom of a family at 131-B Harley Drive in Norman Park, terrorizing the couple and children.

"Colquitt County initially deferred to Tift County but recently a decision was made to go proceed with the case here," said Assistant District Attorney Brian McDaniel. McDaniel said it is possible that the men could be tried in Colquitt County prior to Sims' trial in the crimes in Tift County. "Certainly the injuries suffered by the family were very severe," he said of the Perezes. "We'll certainly try to secure the right amount of justice for them."

Underwood currently is in Hays State Prison, according to the Georgia Department of Corrections Website. He was convicted and sentenced on six counts each of murder, armed robbery, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, four counts of aggravated assault, and four counts of burglary.

Before sentencing on the murder charges, Underwood was sentenced to 120 years on the other counts. Prior to the conviction in Tift County, Underwood was in the state prison system on one other occasion, serving seven months beginning in November 1996 on two counts of theft by taking, the department's Website said.

Sims is being held at Tift County Jail.