Man gets life sentence in father’s death

A jury in Gilmer Feb. 15 sentenced Michael Timothy Caffey to life imprisonment after convicting him of the 2023 beating death of his father.
The 115th District Court jury in Upshur County took only 48 minutes to find Caffey guilty, and 15 minutes to assess the maximum length sentence.
Caffey, 46, of Gilmer, pleaded not guilty to killing his 66-year-old father, Timothy Caffey, with a claw hammer on the premises of their home in the Latch community.
The slaying on Airstrip Road is believed to have occurred last March 26, although testimony was that the body was found the next day by roofers who had come to the home to work.
It was under a tarp in the front yard, but the prosecution, led by Upshur County District Attorney Billy Byrd, alleged that the victim was first beaten in the head in his own pickup before being dragged out onto the ground and beaten further. An autopsy showed the elder Caffey was struck in the head at least 19 times.
The prosecution, headed by Upshur County District Attorney Billy Byrd, called more than 15 witnesses, and testimony was that the father and son had had a strained relationship over money. One witness testified that within days before the homicide, she saw the defendant lunge at his father when the elder Caffey was doing yard work at her residence.
Caffey had initially planned to testify, but informed trial Judge Dean Fowler he had decided not to. Defense attorney Matthew Patton, who called no witnesses, criticized the sheriff’s office’s investigation of the case, and implied that another man, who had supposedly once pulled a gun on the elder Caffey, might be responsible.
The 10-man, 2-women jury agreed with Byrd’s call to impose the life sentence in a case where the punishment range was 15-99 years, or life. (Since the crime wasn’t capital murder, the death penalty could not be imposed.) Patton made no suggestions on the length of sentence.
The verdict is subject to appeal. A jury was picked in the case two days before the two days of testimony opened on Wednesday of last week.
Assistant District Attorney Michael Northcutt joined Byrd in prosecuting the case.

– By Phillip Williams

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