The new A&E series Accused: Guilty or Innocent? is back on May 12 with the fourth episode: “Cold Case Killer or Innocent Teenage Girl?” The show has already explored some complex cases in previous episodes, showing viewers the perspective of the defendants after they are accused of a crime, including a case of either attempted murder or a protective mother and a case of murder or self-defense.
This episode follows Angel Bumpass as she is charged with felony murder for a cold case from 10 years earlier, when she would have been 13 years old. Police say one of the fingerprints on the sticky side of the duct tape used to bind and suffocate the victim was matched to Bumpass, though she said she was never there.
Where is Angel Bumpass today?
Bumpass Was Sentenced to Life in Prison & Isn’t Eligible for Release Until 2079
On October 3, 2019, the jury found Bumpass guilty of the 2009 murder that happened when she was 13. She was found guilty of first-degree felony murder as well as guilty of the attempt to commit especially aggravated robbery. The jury deliberated for just over 4 1/2 hours. On November 21, she was sentenced to life in prison for the murder count and eight years for the aggravated robbery count.
According to Tennessee court records, Bumpass isn’t eligible for release until July 6, 2079, 60 years after her sentence began. She is currently serving her sentence at the Tennessee Prison for Women, located in Nashville.
According to a website for Bumpass called Justice for Angel Bumpass, a motion of appeal was filed on December 20, 2019, and the hearing was set for March 27, 2020. Because of the coronavirus outbreak, that hearing has been delayed, but no new date has been given. Bumpass’ appeal will be handled by a different legal team than her original trial, Heavy has learned.
A Petition Is Circulating to Attempt to Overturn the Life Sentence & Grant Her a Retrial
Did you know there’s no minimum age for prosecuting child offenders in 33 of the 50 states? On tonight's episode of #AccusedAE (at 10PM), we meet Angel Bumpass, who was charged with a crime that occurred when she was 13—the murder of a 68-year-old man. https://t.co/6KdyWG6R56
— AECrimeInvestigation (@AERealCrime) May 12, 2020
A petition is circulating on Change.org to demand a retrial in the case of Angel Bumpass. The petition states that in 2009, Bumpass was a star pupil in eighth grade. It adds that at the time she was served with a warrant for the murder, over nine years later, she was “a 23 year old mother of two, in her second year of school enrolled at Jefferson Community and Technical College.” She was set to enter a nursing program that summer.
The guilty verdict was unexpected for both her legal team and her supporters. Bumpass’ supporters have expressed their frustrations and disappointment with Bumpass’ defense during her trial, saying her lawyers “failed to present any type of mitigating circumstances, character witnesses to construct a picture as to who Angel was at that point in her life. To show that she was not culpable of anything of that [nature].”
The Justice for Angel Bumpass site seeks both support for a retrial motion and financial support for her family, who are said to be overwhelmed by legal fees.