Sentencing delayed for attempted cop killer convictPublished 10:32am Wednesday, April 16, 2014
By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor
A Birmingham man who was found guilty in March of attempting to kill a police officer will not learn his sentence until late June after his original April 16 sentencing date was continued.
Todd Sterling Miller, 45, originally was scheduled to be sentenced on one count of attempted murder at 9 a.m. on April 16, but his court date was continued until 9 a.m. on June 25 at the request of his new defense attorney, Erskine Mathis, according to court documents.
Miller, whose address was listed on Ridgemont Road in Birmingham and previously was listed on Diane Circle in Alabaster, was found guilty by a jury after about seven-and-a-half hours of deliberation on March 13.
The jury’s verdict came after a three-day trial before Shelby County District Court Judge Sonny Conwill. The jury found Miller guilty of attempting to run over Pelham Police Department Lt. David Rushton on March 13, 2012 while Rushton was attempting to deploy a spike strip to stop Miller’s green Nissan Xterra.
According to the Sheriff’s Office at the time of Miller’s arrest, Task Force members used “deadly force” to apprehend Miller in March 2012 during a high-speed, multi-city pursuit ending on Interstate 65 between mile marker 231 and 228 in Calera. No law enforcement personnel were injured in the incident, but Miller was treated at the scene and was flown to UAB Hospital for further treatment.
Miller also faces another attempted murder charges for allegedly striking three U.S. marshals’ vehicles ““after accelerating to a high rate of speed after emergency equipment had been activated requesting that he come to a stop.”
As of March 13, Miller’s attempted murder charge related to the U.S. marshals was still pending.
In a bond recommendation filed with Miller’s original arrest warrant, the Shelby County District Attorney’s Office alleged Miller “has stated to a witness in these cases, in summary, that he lives day-to-day and flees from the police because he will be sent to prison for the rest of his life if he is caught.
“Additionally, he told this witness that he has fled from police multiple times in recent months in order to avoid going to jail,” read the bond recommendation.
Miller has remained in the Shelby County Jail on bonds totaling $3.5 million since his 2012 arrest.
Calera, Alabaster and Pelham police officers and the Alabama Department of Transportation and the Alabama Department of Public Safety assisted in Miller’s arrest.