Gov. Ivey offers reward to help solve 2016 murder of 19-year-old

Published 10:05 pm Wednesday, March 21, 2018

A year and three months after 19-year-old Jaequan Simmons was shot and killed, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey has offered a reward to find his killer.

Ivey signed a proclamation last week offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for the teenager’s death.

Simmons was killed on the night of Dec. 16, 2016, on the 1900 block of Kayser Street around 9:17 p.m.

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When officers arrived on scene, they found Simmons inside a vehicle with a gunshot wound. The 19-year-old was pronounced dead on the scene, according to a previous Times-Journal report.

Simmons graduated from Keith High School in 2015, where he was a standout player on the Bears’ basketball team.

At the time of his death, his former head coach and now Keith principal Tommy Tisdale said Simmons worked at Bush Hog and attended Keith basketball games regularly.

Dallas County District Attorney Michael Jackson said the case has gone cold. No arrest has been made, and there are no suspects. After talking with Simmons family, Jackson said he made a request to the governor’s office for help with solving the case.

Jackson hopes with a reward on the table, someone comes forward with information to point law enforcement in the right direction and give Simmons’ family some closure.

“Hopefully somebody gives some information that will lead to the arrest and conviction of whoever committed the crime,” Jackson said.

Jackson said he has not spoken with Simmons’ family since the reward was offered, but he plans on reaching out to them to let them know of the reward and that an effort is being made to solve his case.

Simmons was one of six young men below the age of 20 killed in 2016. A number of those remain unsolved. Just two days after Simmons was killed, another teenager was shot and killed, 17-year-old Quadriquis Bell.

“My purpose is to try to get as many of these cases solved resolved as possible, these cases that are unsolved,” Jackson said. “We’re helping law enforcement as much as we can.”

In year’s past, Jackson said law enforcement officers have had issues with people speaking up about crimes that knew what happened. The district attorney said people have been more cooperative over the last year and a half.

There are also rewards available through Crime Stoppers and the city of Selma’s violent crime reward fun, which was set up by the Selma City Council over the last couple of years.

“You want them to help whether they get compensated or not, but they can get compensated for a lot of these cases,” Jackson said.

Anyone with information is asked to call Jackson’s office at (334) 874-2540, the Selma Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division at (334) 874-2515 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-442-7463.