Attorney General Steve Marshall announced that the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals on Friday, August 3, upheld the capital murder conviction of Saraya Shakai Atkins who was convicted in Mobile County Circuit Court in September 2016 for the murder of Robert Perry. Atkins was also convicted of first-degree robbery and third-degree theft.
Officials say evidence at trial established that on March 11, 2014, Perry took his stepdaughter to Walmart to cash her income tax refund check, where they were observed by Atkins and another woman, Kimberli Lindsay.
They say when Perry and his stepdaughter left in their vehicle, Atkins and Lindsey followed in another vehicle, pulled in front of their vehicle, and slammed on the brakes to stop them. Atkins got out, walked to Perry’s window, shoved a gun in the vehicle, and demanded: “Give me your wallet.”
Officials say Perry started to give her his wallet, but Atkins said she wanted the stepdaughter’s wallet instead. As Atkins leaned further into the vehicle, Perry tried to grab the gun and a struggle ensued. Atkins fired three shots killing Perry. Atkins took the stepdaughter’s wallet with $1,902. The two women fled but were shortly apprehended by police.
Mobile County District Attorney Ashley Rich prosecuted the case in circuit court. Atkins was sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for the capital murder conviction, life imprisonment for the first-degree robbery conviction, and one year for the third-degree theft of property conviction. Subsequently, Atkins appealed her convictions.
Also, in January 2017, Atkins’ co-defendant, Lindsay, pleaded guilty to felony-murder and was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Lindsay also pleaded guilty to robbery in the first degree for which she was sentenced to 25 years in prison.
The Attorney General's Criminal Appeals Division represented the State during Atkins’ appeal, urging the Court of Criminal Appeals to reject Atkins’ arguments and for for the Court of Criminal Appeals to affirm the convictions. On August 3, 2018, that court affirmed Atkins’ convictions and sentences.
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