Jordan Tyler Durden, 24, changed his plea from not guilty to guilty for the 2008 capital murder of his grandfather, John Calvin Durden, 69, and the attempted murder of his grandmother, Eva Durden, both of Moody.
Durden also pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree promoting prison contraband after he was found with two metal shanks while incarcerated in the St. Clair County Jail in 2009.
St. Clair County Assistant District Attorney Carol Boone said the weapons could have been used for a possible escape attempt.
In accordance with a plea agreement with the state, Durden will serve a life sentence without the possibility of parole for the capital murder of Calvin Durden.
He faced the possibility of death by lethal injection if convicted of capital murder.
Durden changed his plea before Circuit Court Judge Jim Hill.
Hill did not sentence Durden for the capital murder Tuesday because the state must present its evidence to a jury in a capital murder case.
Hill will sentence Durden after the Jan. 30 criminal trial.
At Tuesday’s hearing, Hill sentenced Durden to a life sentence for the attempted murder of Eva Durden. He also sentenced him to 10 years for each promoting prison contraband charge. The sentences will run concurrently.
Boone told the judge that the state’s evidence would show that Durden caused the death of his grandfather by stabbing him, and then stole his grandfather’s Ford van before fleeing to Florida.
Boone said the state’s evidence would also show that Durden attempted to cause the death of his grandmother by hitting, stabbing and cutting her with broken glass.
She said the state’s evidence would also show that Durden was found with metal shank in March and April of 2009 while incarcerated at the St. Clair County Jail.
Boone said Durden could have used the makeshift weapons in an escape attempt.
Boone declined comment after Tuesday’s hearing, citing that the state must still present evidence in the criminal trial.
Durden’s defense attorneys, Stan Brown and Larry McClendon, also declined to comment Tuesday.
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