Trio involved in 2017 kidnapping, attack on Neptune Beach veteran receive maximum sentences

Jacksonville, FL — The three people involved in the April 2017 kidnapping and attack on an elderly Neptune Beach veteran, which ultimately led to his death, have now learned their sentence.

A judge sentenced Douglas Cercy and Ray Jones to life in prison, while Jennifer Schulte received a 40 year sentence.  State Attorney Melissa Nelson says these were the maximum sentences for all three suspects under their plea agreements.

The trio was involved in kidnapping 86-year-old Melvin Clark, driving him to an ATM to withdraw money, and then had him drive to Jacksonville's far Westside. Clark was later found with his throat slashed off Maxville-Macclenny Highway. The three then fled south to Boca Raton in Clark's vehicle. Clark survived his injuries initially, but died several months later. 

The State Attorney's Office says Schulte, Cercy, and Jones all pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, armed kidnapping, and armed robbery, though, Cercy later attempted to withdraw his guilty plea, claiming that his attorney did not make clear that Cercy would be waiving his right to appeal.

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