Man sentenced to 25 years for Calera murder

COLUMBIANA – A 27-year-old Calera man pleaded guilty to murder and was sentenced to 25 years in prison on Feb. 9.



Jessy Charles Hoyt was charged with murder in the Nov. 22, 2013 death of 46-year-old James Edward Sherwood of Calera.

Hoyt entered his plea in front of Shelby County Circuit Judge Lara Alvis.

Sherwood’s body was discovered two days later by a man walking in an underdeveloped, wooded area off Elvira Road, or Shelby County 269, in Hoover.

The homicide occurred at a residence in Calera, and Sherwood’s body was disposed in Hoover, according to police.

Initially, both Hoyt and Russell Ray Thomas of Helena were charged with murder.

Thomas pleaded guilty in April 2014 to one count of hindering prosecution and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

A grand jury in March 2014 indicted Hoyt for murder and Thomas for hindering prosecution. The men also were charged with first-degree theft for allegedly stealing $200 to $500 from Sherwood, according to court records.

The indictment against Thomas claimed he destroyed evidence by burning clothing Hoyt had worn and helping dispose of Sherwood’s body.

A third man, Charles Edgar Tucker, 61, of Calera, also was indicted for hindering prosecution and first-degree theft for the money stolen from Sherwood, according to court records.

The indictment against Tucker claims he destroyed evidence by loaning his vehicle to Hoyt and Thomas.