Jermaine Jones, 37, was originally sentenced in 1999 to life in prison without the possibility of
parole for one count of First Degree Murder. Jones has been re-sentenced to life in prison
following a three and a half day proceeding that included the testimony of actual witnesses to the
murder and the introduction of voluminous records. Three expert witnesses also testified.
In 2012, the United States Supreme Court decided that mandatory life sentences without parole
for juvenile offenders are unconstitutional. Jones was 16 years old at the time of the murder.
Jones originally pled guilty to the crime that involved the killing of a guard at the Big Cypress
Wilderness Institute in Collier County in 1998. At the time Jones was housed at a juvenile
facility for criminal offenders. Jones and a co-defendant had been clearing brush and chopping
down trees when they brutally attacked a guard with an ax and a machete.
Jones is now entitled to a sentencing review 25 years from his original sentencing which will be
in 2024. Mazer Jean, the co-defendant, is scheduled to be re-sentenced in November.
Assistant State Attorney Erik Leontiev and former Assistant State Attorney Kevin Dalton
handled the case.
State Attorney’s Office