Suspect in Birmingham twins' murders has a violent criminal hist - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Suspect in Birmingham twins' murders has a violent criminal history

Stanley Chatman. Source: Birmingham Police Department Stanley Chatman. Source: Birmingham Police Department

FOX6 News has learned more about the criminal past of a suspect charged in the shootings deaths of 17-year-old Birmingham twins.

Police say Stanlye Chatman has a violent criminal history and has already been in prison once. Jefferson County District Attorney Brandon Falls tells FOX6 News reporter Christy Hutchings that this situation boils down to jail overcrowding.

He says prosecutors and police can keep putting people behind bars but ultimately sentence lengths aren't up to them.

"[Stanley Chatman] is the type of person we have to keep locked up," Birmingham Police Chief A.C. Roper said.

To understand Roper's frustration, we have to take a look at Chatman's history. In 2005, when he was 19, Chatman was charged with the murder of Derrick Jackson, a teen shot and killed outsid a recreation center. A jury lowered his charge to manslaughter and he served about half of his 15-year sentence.

Fastforward to November 2012 and Chatman is a free man for a while. In March 2013, he's arrested again for the murder of Derrick King. Chatman is booked and bonds out of jail a few days later.

Falls says overcrowding often causes criminals to get out early. He says there aren't enough prisons and instead of building more the state has been cutting prison sentences.

In Chatman's case, it's not known if his past history was taken into consideration when he was given a bond but if it wasn't, Roper says that's a problem.

"Bottom line it's difficult to predict human behavior, but one predictor is past human behavior and no doubt about it...This subject has a violent history, and he has shown it over and over again," Roper said.

FOX6 News reached out to the Alabama Department of Corrections and the judge who allowed Chatman's bond but were unable to reach anyone because of the holiday.

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