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Luvenia SPATES





Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Domestic dispute
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: September 22, 2011
Date of arrest: Same day
Date of birth: 1958

Victim profile: Robert Lee Armstrong, 67

Method of murder: Shooting
Location: Bessemer, Jefferson County, Alabama
Status: Sentenced to 30 years in prison on September 4, 2014

Bessemer woman sentenced to 30 years for murder in 2011 shooting death

By Kent Faulk -

September 04, 2014

BESSEMER, Alabama -- A Bessemer woman was sentenced today to 30 years in prison for her conviction in the 2011 shooting death of a man during a domestic dispute.

A jury in April found Luvenia Spates, 56, guilty of murder in the death of 67-year-old Robert Lee Armstrong.

Spates was sentenced to 30 years in prison Friday by Bessemer Cutoff Jefferson County Circuit Judge David Carpenter. She will be given credit for the four months she spent in the county jail awaiting sentencing.

Armstrong was found shot to death Sept. 22, 2011 in the 2900 block of 12th Avenue North in Bessemer. The shooting was the result of a domestic dispute.

Assistant Jefferson County District Attorney Wendy Pope prosecuted the case. Attorney Billy Jewell represents Spates.

"I respect Judge Carpenter's decision, however, I along with her many strong supporters from her church and community felt that the sentence should have at least been in the minimum range of twenty years split (with) 3 to serve," Jewell stated in an email response to questions from "I have not talked to her about an appeal. Hopefully, I can meet with her soon to discuss what she wants to do."

Armstrong's estate also has a wrongful death lawsuit pending against Spates. The estate also had claimed she had taken Armstrong's 2003 Kia Sorento. In 2013 a judge ordered that Spates transfer ownership of a vehicle to Armstrong's estate but had stayed the wrongful death portion of the suit until after the criminal trial was completed.


Luvenia Spates



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