Father, son plead in manslaughter case

·2 min read

Sep. 7—A father and son accused of causing a family member's death will face probation but no jail time after a plea agreement on Thursday.

Timothy Scott Hammons, 56, and Ethan Hammons, 22, both of Sinking Creek Road in London, were charged with manslaughter of Terry Hammons, Scott's brother, who died after a family fight at Scott Hammons' home on Aug 24, 2019.

Timothy Scott Hammons received a 5-year sentence for manslaughter, which was probated for 5 years. Ethan Hammons' charges were dropped to fourth-degree assault, with a 12-month sentence probated for 24 months. That means the two cannot have any violations during that probation period or they could face serving the complete sentence time.

The incident leading to the charges against the father and son came after a family dispute at Scott Hammons' home on Aug. 24, 2019.

Terry Hammons was taken to the University of Kentucky Medical Center for injuries sustained in the dispute, but left the hospital AMA (Against Medical Advice) that day. Four days later he was found lying dead in his sister's London home, reportedly from internal bleeding.

Commonwealth Attorney Jackie Steele said the plea agreement came after careful review of the evidence.

"In preparation for this case, it became clear that the delay in the death (of Terry Hammons) after the assault could be questionable," Steele said. "Terry Hammons checked out of the hospital two hours after his arrival, against medical advice. He went back the next day where they scheduled him for a CT scan and an MRI. He was supposed to have surgery for a central fracture in his eye. Two days later he was found deceased."

Steele said the defense attorneys, Conrad Cessna and Jason Kincer, also had multiple defenses to create reasonable doubt that Terry Hammons' death was not specifically caused by the assault at Scott Hammons' home.

"The assault happened four days prior to the death and there was no time line to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the death was caused by the assault," Steele said.

Another factor in the case was that two key witnesses — Timothy Hammons' sister and brother — have died since the incident. Sheila Bowling Osborne was originally indicted with her brother Scott and nephew Ethan Hammons, but those charges were dismissed by the Commonwealth Attorney's office as it was determined that Osborne had no role in the assault against Terry Hammons. The other brother, Tony Bowling, died shortly after the incident, on Oct. 7, 2019. Ironically, Osborne died on the same day two years later.