Ronnie Jones Found Guilty of Murder

By Scott Sarvay
By Max Resnik
By Maureen Mespell

July 29, 2011 Updated Jul 29, 2011 at 9:50 AM EDT

AUBURN, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) - After close to seven hours of deliberation, the jury in the Ronnie Jones murder trial returned a verdict of guilty on the count of murder.

The jury also found Jones guilty on one of two counts of attempted murder and guilty of criminal recklessness.

Sentencing is set for August 26.
The jury in the Ronnie Jones murder trial is still deliberating late Thursday evening. They're deciding the fate of the 40 year old accused of fatally shooting his girlfriend, Melissa Patrick on New Year's Day of last year.

Murder Defendant Ronnie Jones took the stand Thursday before closing arguments, basically saying the entire thing was an accident when it comes to the death of Melissa Patrick.

He said he was going to her place of work to kill himself in front of her and when she tried to stop him, the gun went off, shooting her in the chest.

Then when she was falling, he tried to catch her and the gun went off again hitting her in the face.

Jones is also being charged with then trying to kill his ex-wife and her husband.

And just before closing statements an additional charge of voluntary manslaughter against Jones was issued.

On Wednesday, in an audio recording played in the courtroom, Ronnie Jones says it was “Something she said that made him just snap”.

It was bang to the chest, bang to the head,” when describing his encounter with his girlfriend Melissa Patrick at a nursing home on New Year’s Day 2010.

That audio recording one was of two different recordings played for jurors and members of the audience in a DeKalb County courtroom in Auburn.

The alleged murder and alleged attempted murders all occurred on New Year’s Day 2010, but the history dates back to protective orders between Sarah Patrick and Ronnie Jones for much of 2009.

Testimony was provided by a number of witnesses Wednesday including a forensic scientist and a detective with the Indiana State Police who recorded Jones saying he shot Melissa Patrick.

Testimony was also heard from Jason Patrick, Sarah Patrick and Sarah’s grandmother Sadie Huff.

The latter three described a contentious and often volatile relationship with Jones that often included threats.

According to police and the testimony, after Jones allegedly shot and killed Melissa Patrick he made his way to Sarah and Jason Patrick’s home to shoot them as well. Prior to his arrival, he left a voicemail saying that this will “probably be the last time you’re going to hear from me. I’m going away for a long time. Take care of my kids.”

Shortly after leaving the voicemail, Jones showed up at the Patrick’s, rang the doorbell and then began firing through the front doorway where six children were just beginning to wakeup after celebrating the New Year.

Sarah Patrick was on a 911 call throughout the ordeal in which Jason Patrick shot Jones in the back of his leg in retaliation. That was followed by Jones driving his car into the Patrick house.

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