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St. Paddy’s Day shooter found guilty of double murder as chaotic trial ends

Jordan Kyle Cummins (Photo from the Mississippi Department of Public Safety)

After a week of intense court proceedings, a jury found Jordan Kyle Cummins guilty of killing two people outside the annual Hal’s St. Paddy’s Parade in Jackson in 2023.

The six men and six women of the Hinds County jury sided on Wednesday with state prosecutors, who argued Cummins was beating his girlfriend Jenny Lukens inside his car when a group of concerned paradegoers stopped their vehicle to intervene. After a brief dispute, Cummins fired shots, killing volunteer firefighter Joshua Spann and daycare worker Jubilee Simpkins.

Cummins, 29, and Lukens, 30, were aligned in their testimonies with both arguing that Cummins was hitting the dashboard and not Lukens. Cummins’ defense attorney, Bill Kellum, tried to vouch that his client was acting in self-defense after the other vehicle’s driver, Kam Owens, opened the door to Cummins’ car and began hitting him.

While members of both parties, including Spann, pulled guns, Cummins was the only one to fire shots – a fact that prosecutors and Kellum hinged opposing arguments on. Spann, 27, was one of several passengers who approached Cummins’ car. Simpkins, 23, was not. She was still in the back of Owens’ vehicle when shot and killed, according to sources who were inside the courtroom.

Joshua Spann (left) and Jubilee Simpkins (right) were murdered by Jordan Kyle Cummins on March 25, 2023. Submitted photos.

A slew of witnesses, including responding officers along with acquaintances and friends of both parties, helped lay out the scene of March 25, 2023, for members of the jury. Photographs of Spann and Simpkins’ bodies paired with surveillance video of the actual incident provided imagery as witnesses testified that Cummins was highly intoxicated at the time of the shooting after drinking a fifth of Crown Royal and smoking marijuana earlier in the day.

Jordan Jagger, who was with Cummins and Lukens at the parade prior to the shooting, testified that Cummins had shown signs of violence well before he was ever approached by Owens, Spann, and other passengers.

Jagger said after they arrived at a friend’s tent, Cummins touched her in a way that irritated Lukens. Lukens confronted Cummins about it, to which he responded by pushing her into a tentpole with his hand clutched around her jaw. As another witness, Brook McFarland, stepped in, Cummins released and asked Lukens for his gun, saying he would “flatline this b—tch.” Both Cummins and Lukens were then asked to leave the tent. They complied, and within an hour, the fatal shooting took place on Jefferson Street in front of the Mississippi Fairgrounds.

Prosecutors also showed members of the jury a video Cummins posted to social media from jail just days after the killings. In the video, which was filmed on an illegally obtained cell phone, Cummins said: “Free me, man. You walk up on me, and I’m going to bust your a—. It’s real, man. I know it looks sweet, but sh—t ain’t sweet, man. Two dead.”

The information provided by prosecutors was enough for members of the jury to unanimously find Cummins guilty of two counts of first-degree murder. His sentencing date has been set for Monday, June 24, at 1 p.m.

Jenny Lukens (above) testified on Monday that she was not physically assaulted by Cummins, and Spann pulled a gun first. Photo from the Hinds County Sheriff’s Office.

The trial of Cummins did not take place without controversy, though. His mother, Angie Kellum, was arrested on Wednesday for witness tampering. Angie is said to have started a three-way phone call with her son and Lukens to discuss the trial. On the same day, the media was removed from the courtroom after a local television station showed some of the jurors during a news segment.

While Cummins is expected to receive a hefty sentence, Lukens will have to appear in court on one charge of hindering prosecution. She could also face jail time.

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