Butler County man sentenced to life in prison

Published 10:14 am Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Darrell Dewayne Gipson, a 40-year-old resident of Steiner Store Road in Butler County, was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison after being convicted of a rape, burglary, robbery and kidnapping committed in March 2012.

According to reports at the time, a 66-year-old female was awakened by a black male who had broken into her home north of Highland Home.

The suspect raped and beat the woman before taking some of her money and forcing her into her vehicle.

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Investigators said the victim was taken into the woods, where she was raped and beaten again before being forced to drive the suspect to his destination.

Gipson was arrested in the same area where the victim was forced to drive.

He was charged with first-degree assault, first-degree rape, third-degree robbery and first-degree kidnapping.

Gipson was recently found guilty of those charges at a trial, though the first-degree kidnapping charge was reduced to a charge of unlawful imprisonment, which is a misdemeanor.

Circuit Judge Terri Bozeman Lovell handed down the sentences at the Crenshaw County Courthouse on Tuesday.

Class A felonies carry a penalty of no less than 10 years and no more than 99 years to life, and the District Attorney’s Office requested the maximum sentence.

The District Attorney’s Office also brought to light two prior felonies from 1996: convictions for burglary and forgery.

Lovell classified Gipson as a habitual offender and handed down fines, $3,840 in restitution, two life sentences, two 99-year sentences and three months imprisonment (for the misdemeanor) to be served consecutively.

“We are pleased with the sentencing,” said District Attorney Charlotte Tesmer. “We feel that it is appropriate for the crimes he committed.”