HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — The possibility for William Darby to have an immunity hearing has been denied by Madison County Circuit Court Judge Alan Mann, according to court documents.
Earlier this month, a new trial date was set after the former Huntsville Police Officer’s murder conviction was recently overturned. On March 24, the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals reversed his conviction, sending the case back to the trial court.
Darby’s defense team filed a motion asking the court to schedule an immunity hearing in order to discuss the aspect of the Stand Your Ground law in his case, saying the trial court applied the wrong standard of self-defense, from the perspective that Darby was not a citizen, but an on-duty police officer.
Darby was sentenced to 25 years in prison after being convicted in 2021 for the on-duty shooting of Jeffery Parker at Parker’s home in Huntsville in 2018.
The defense had argued Darby’s shooting of Parker was due to Parker being armed and failing to heed Darby’s instructions to drop his weapon.
The appeals court said there was a failure to instruct the jury on the defense’s requested instructions which stated, “The reasonableness of an officer’s actions in using deadly force must be objectively reasonable judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene, the fact that officers are forced to make split-second decisions, and in light of the facts and circumstances confronting them at the time.”
The appeals court said the failure to instruct the jury on the defense’s requested instructions was a reversible error.
Madison County District Attorney Rob Broussard told News 19 they will try to prosecute Darby again, “Probably the easiest way to picture it, is it’s as if he’s been charged, but there’s never been a trial. It’s almost like you’re back at the starting point, and obviously, we’ll pursue it again.”
Darby’s attorneys filed an appeal arguing that the judge failed to give the jury an instruction related to police officer training in a situation with an armed suspect.
After his conviction was reversed, Darby was released from prison and is currently out on bond.
His new trial is scheduled to be held on December 11, 2023.