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Alan Eugene MILLER





Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Revenge
Number of victims: 3
Date of murders: August 5, 1999
Date of arrest: Same day
Date of birth: January 20, 1965
Victims profile: Lee Holdbrooks, 32, and Scott Yancy, 28 (co-workers); and Terry Jarvis, 39
Method of murder: Shooting
Location: Shelby County, Alabama, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on July 31, 2000

Shot two co-workers to death at their office, then killed a third person at a company where he used to work.

Was arrested shortly after the shootings when police spotted him on nearby Interstate 65 and forced him to pull over. He briefly scuffled with officers.


Alan Eugene Miller

Defense attorneys for Alan Eugene Miller -- accused of fatally shooting three people at two offices he worked -- say that Alan is, "at best, very slow" and should be in a mental health facility rather than in prison. Shelby County District Attorney Robby Owens disagrees and said he would "absolutely" seek the death penalty for the lethal driver killer.

Miller, 34, pleaded innocent by reason of mental disease or defect in the shooting deaths of co-workers Lee Holdbrooks, 32, and Scott Yancy, 28, at Ferguson Enterprises, and the shooting death of Terry Jarvis, 39, at Post Airgas. Miller was a truck driver for Ferguson and worked at Post Airgas until January.

Holdbrooks and Yancy were Ferguson employees, and Jarvis was a supervisor at Post Airgas. Miller was a Ferguson truck driver at the time of the incident, and was laid off from Post Airgas in January. A friend of Holdbrooks has said Miller was angry because he felt Holdbrooks, another driver, was receiving longer and better routes than he was.

Miller reportedly had a history of fighting with fellow employees and once was fired for fighting on the job. The Birmingham News, citing interviews with Miller's former co-workers and employers, also reported that he had repeated shouting matches with one of the three men he is charged with killing on Aug. 5. But the newspaper said Miller's former colleagues also described him as a hard worker who kept to himself.


Alan Eugene Miller

"Alan didn't bother anybody."

according to his mum.

When Alan Eugene Miller left for work in Alabama no knew predicted what was about to happen. The unmarried Miller lived with his mother, Barbara Miller, in Billingsley. She said her son "went off to work just as he always does this morning. He left here like he always does, with a 7-Up and a couple of things of biscuits and sausage."

But when he got to the office early Thursday, August 5, 1999, Miller had more than his lunch on his mind.

Miller worked at Ferguson Enterprises, a heating and air-conditioning firm. It was here that he struck first deviated from his normal daily routine.

Miller had entered the unlocked Ferguson building with his gun drawn that morning. The first person he encountered was Lee Holdbrooks. "As a result of whatever was said, shots were fired,'' the D.A. assigned to the case said.

Holdbrooks, 32, was killed by numerous shots to the chest and then one final shot to the head.

Miller then went down a hall and shot Christopher Yancy, 28, to death, then ran out of the building after another employee entered, saw the gun and bravely yelled, "Don't shoot me. I haven't done anything."

Officers arrived only minutes after being summoned at 7:04 a.m. but Miller had already moved on. While officers secured the crime scene, the towns 911 dispatcher got a second emergency call concerning a shooting at Post Airgas Inc., a gas firm five miles from Ferguson Enterprises. A third victim was found there. Miller had driven five miles south on U.S. 31 to Post Airgas, where he had worked until January, and shot the assistant manager, 39-year-old Terry Jarvis.

Miller was apprehended after a high-speed chase on a nearby highway, shortly after police arrived at the shooting scenes after 7 a.m. Police found a handgun on the seat of his car.

"They ... were able to take the suspect into custody after a brief scuffle," a spokesman for the police said.

So what made Alan go off?

According to one former workmate, and friend of one of the victims, Alan was very jealous of the two victims at Ferguson. Chad Ingram (the workmate) said Miller thought Holdbrooks was getting the preferred longer driving assignments at Ferguson. Ingram told The Birmingham News he knew that Miller was angry with Holdbrooks over the routes before the shooting happened. "I guess (Miller) felt Scott and Lee were in cahoots about getting a better route,'' Ingram said.

But what about the other victim?

Christopher Yancy was a dispatcher at Ferguson.

And why did he drive all the way to the other building?

Miller and Jarvis had repeated shouting matches in the five years Miller worked there. Jarvis, as assistant manager, was responsible for making sure deliveries were made and gave Miller orders. "Alan would refuse to deliver it," A former colleague said. "Alan didn't like to take orders from Terry."

Is that all?

Oh, yeah, he was laid off earlier this year by Post Airgas because of "economic downsizing."

Any other reason?

Well, a witness to this murder said that Miller yelled at Jarvis, "I'm tired of your rumours about me." The police would still haven't told anyone what these 'rumours' may be, or if it was just paranoia on Millers behalf.

Where their any signs he'd go off?

I guess their were. A few years ago he got into a fight at work when two guys started to make fun of Miller, calling him a redneck, his old boss commented in a local paper. "He didn't start it, but he sure finished it," he said. "He took care of both of them."

What about his childhood? Any clues there?

Ahh. This is where we see what was going on. Miller was born in Chicago, the middle child of seven, two of whom have died. He had a couple of head injuries from falls as a child and suffered continual headaches, which he treated with Goody's powders (what the hell are they?), said his mother.

When he was 7, Miller's family moved from Chicago to the Birmingham area. He attended elementary schools in Birmingham's West End, attended Midfield High School and graduated from Trinity High School in Euless, Texas.

"He never brought a girl home and never talked about any girls," Mrs. Miller said. "I heard him tell his brother one time that all women are interested in is money and cars."

After high school, Miller considered joining the military, his mother said, "but they wanted him to lose weight, and he didn't want to lose weight."

What about history of mental problems in the family?

The former owner of Enterprise Grocery, Patricia Cooedy, said that Miller would only answer direct questions. He never initiated conversations - unlike his father, Ivan Miller, who often came in quoting the Bible and predicting doom for sinners.

So how has Alan been since he was arrested?

His mother who has visited him said he was only concerned about missing his favourite television shows. So al least the thought of a murder trial isn't bothering him.

And what about the trial?

All I know is that he has pleaded innocent by reason of mental disease or defect This has been a pretty cool page, what about something really cliche to bring it down?

Sherrie Williams, a neighbour of the Millers, was surprised at his arrest and said the suspect had always been "real nice." "We leave for work about the same time. He always speaks," she said. "He doesn't strike you as a fellow who would do something like they say he has done." And you don't get any more cliche than that.

Anything else of interest?

The shootings took place one week after, and about 144 miles down the road from the Atlanta office that Mark Barton left covered in blood when he murdered nine people.


Jury recommends death for Alabama killer

June 17, 2000

COLUMBIANA, Ala. -- A truck driver who walked into two businesses, complained his co-workers there were spreading rumors about him, and then shot them was convicted Saturday of capital murder in the rampage that left three men dead.

A Shelby County jury deliberated for 20 minutes before finding Alan Eugene Miller guilty.

They later recommended the death penalty. Shelby County Circuit Judge Al Crowson said he would scedule final sentencing later. He can either accept or reject jurors' suggestion.

Miller, 35, showed no reaction as the verdict was read. During the trial, his lawyers had all but conceded his guilt in the Aug. 5, 1999, shootings in the Birmingham suburb of Pelham.

Miller was charged with gunning down Lee Holdbrooks and Scott Yancy at Ferguson Enterprises, the company where he worked. Then, prosecutors said, he drove to Post Airgas, a company that had fired him, and shoot Terry Jarvis.

During closing arguments Saturday, prosecutor Gordon Ladner told jurors the victims had at least one thing in common: Miller wanted them all dead.

Speaking as jurors looked at photos taken inside Ferguson Enterprises, state forensics expert Angelo Della Manna testified Holdbrooks crawled more than 20 feet down a hall despite being shot three times in the chest, once in the face and once in the right shoulder. The fatal shot was fired from less than 2 inches away, he said.

Defense attorney Mickey Johnson conceded the evidence was convincing, but described Miller as a "tortured soul" who suffers from a personality disorder. A psychological evaluation found Miller believed he had been slighted by "perceived events," he said.

Before opening fire at each place, Miller made comments about the victims spreading rumors about him, testimony showed.

"(Miller) believed in the death penalty. He just believed he could impose it," said Johnson.

Johnson criticized prosecutors for showing dozens of gruesome crime scene an autopsy photos, calling the display "excessive." He rested his case Friday without calling any witnesses to counter a mountain of prosecution evidence, including an eyewitness to one slaying and testimony linking Miller's handgun to shell casings and slugs found at the crime scenes.

Miller showed little reaction during the two days of testimony, and he didn't speak to his mother or other relatives seated a few feet behind him. He craned his head once for a better look at one of the crime scene photos.

The two attacks came one week after one of the worst office massacres in U.S. history. On July 29, Mark O. Barton, a frustrated investor, killed nine people and wounded 13 others at two Atlanta brokerage firms before taking his own life.


Alan Eugene Miller: Arrested after a high speed chase.



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