Case continues for man charged with Chelsea murder

Published 12:36 pm Tuesday, May 15, 2018

COLUMBIANA – The case of a Chelsea man who was recently charged in connection with a local homicide was bound over to a Shelby County Grand Jury in late April.

Randall Anthony Gargone, 62, who lists an address on Woodbridge Trail, was initially arrested by the Sheriff’s Office on March 9 and charged with capital murder. He was booked into the Shelby County Jail on no bond.


According to court documents, Gargone allegedly used a hammer and a knife to fatally bludgeon and stab 68-year-old Tracy Ward Austin on March 5. An SCSO press release stated that the homicide took place at Ward’s residence on the 5800 block of Shelby County 39 in the Chelsea area.

During a press conference on the day of his arrest, Shelby County Sheriff John Samaniego revealed that Ward’s family had previously hired Gargone as a handyman and the homicide was likely the result of a robbery gone wrong.

“This individual had knowledge of the house, came in to burglarize, was surprised by Mr. Austin and Mr. Austin was murdered,” Samaniego said.

Capital murder is a Class A felony. If convicted, Gargone could face a maximum sentence of life in prison.

Shortly before the homicide occurred, Samaniego said Gargone was released from prison on two armed robbery convictions.

Because his parole was violated, Gargone was transferred to an Alabama Department of Corrections facility shortly after his case was bound over.