Man sentenced to 15 years in ‘Vampire Cult’ Murder

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James T. Gay, the fourth of the five so-called “Vampire Cult” murder suspects was sentenced to 15 years in prison Friday.

The News Herald (Panama City, Florida) says

Judge James Fensom sentenced James Gay to the maximum sentence for the aggravated battery charge Gay was convicted of during his April jury trial.

Gay, 21, was recruited by William Chase to help ambush Jacob Hendershot in July 2011, along with Joel Millsap, Tammy Morris and Stephanie Pistey. Pistey and Hendershot were romantically involved briefly, and after he broke off their relationship, Pistey told Chase that Hendershot had raped her. Chase planned to jump Hendershot in retaliation, though police found no evidence to support the rape allegations.

Millsap and Morris lured Hendershot to their apartment, which is a short walk from the apartment where Hendershot was staying with his estranged birth mother during a summer visit from his home in Tennessee. As soon as Hendershot got inside the apartment, Gay punched him in the head several times with a chain wrapped around his fist.

Gay left the scene during the attack and wasn’t present when Millsap and Chase, who have both been convicted of murder, cut Hendershot’s throat and choked him to death. […]


Each of the remaining defendants in the case has been convicted of either murder or accessory charges. Millsap was sentenced to 25 years for second-degree murder. Morris and Pistey, who were both convicted of accessory after the fact to second-degree murder, were sentenced to three years probation and 12 years in prison, respectively.

The case picked up the name ‘vampire cult’ when one of the suspects claimed to be part vampire, part werewolf

The case picked-up the name “Vampire Cult” because 18-year-old Stephanie Pistey claims she is part vampire, part werewolf.

Last March the News Herald said Pistey

pleaded no contest to accessory charges and was sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Stephanie Pistey, 19, entered a plea to Judge James Fensom shortly after he declared her mental competency had been restored during her stay at a state hospital. Fensom sentenced her to three years of probation after she serves her prison term. […]

Pistey, on her Facebook page and in televised interviews after her arrest, said she was part vampire and that she thought Henderson’s blood was “cool.”

Nancy Robinson, Hendershot’s biological mother, said in the months between Hendershot’s disappearance and Pistey’s arrest, Pistey would taunt her when they saw each other in the neighborhood.

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This post was last updated: May. 9, 2014