Weatherford Democrat

March 14, 2013

Man’s robbery at gunpoint draws 50-year prison term

19-year-old had history of arrests leading up to armed holdup of smoke shop


Weatherford Democrat

— By CHRISTIN COYNE



A Parker County jury sentenced late Tuesday a 19-year-old man who robbed a Weatherford smoke shop at gunpoint last July to 50 years in prison.

After pleading guilty Monday to the charge of aggravated robbery in the 43rd District Court, defendant Jaggar Lee Bayliff elected to have a jury decide his punishment.

According to testimony, Bayliff entered the business in the 900 block of Main Street wearing a bandana around the lower half of his face and a ball cap and demanded money and K2 from the clerk at gunpoint.

“The victim testified that, during the robbery, all she could think about was that she had to get home to her daughter,” said Assistant District Attorney Jeff Swain, who prosecuted the case with Assistant District Attorney Kathleen Catania. “She said that she became even more fearful when she saw the gun shaking in Bayliff’s hand because she knew that he was nervous and thought he might shoot her even if he didn’t intend to.”

Because of a facial tatoo that covers the left side of his face, the woman recognized him as the man she’d seen outside the store earlier and in the past.

“Weatherford police know their city and, when they heard the description of the robber, knew pretty quickly who had likely committed the crime,” Swain said.  “When they found him two days later, he admitted robbing the store, though he would not tell detectives where the gun he used was located.”

He’d done everything but give up the gun, Bayliff told Det. Mark Wolfenberger in a recording of a later interview played for jurors.

Bayliff laughed as he told the story of his arrest at gunpoint to Wolfenberger.

He did feel sorry for the woman, Bayliff said, adding he knew the woman personally, saying he believed she knew he wouldn’t hurt her.

The woman reported she believed the gun was loaded during the robbery and it was loaded when they located it, Weatherford Police Sgt. Wendy Field testified. 

Prosecutors presented evidence to the six-woman, four-man jury showing Bayliff received juvenile probation in 2010 for retaliation and marijuana possession.

After violating his probation, Bayliff was sent to a facility in Vernon that treats drug addiction and other issues, the assistant chief of juvenile probation testified. However, 76 days later he was discharged unsuccessfully for not progressing, not following the rules and engaging in fights with his peers.

Several weeks later, Bayliff was arrested and charged with engaging in organized criminal activity in connection with three Weatherford tobacco store burglaries, according to testimony. He served 10 months in jail.

Two weeks after his release, Bayliff was again arrested and later convicted of several misdemeanor drug charges, according to the district attorney’s office.

Shortly after his release from jail, Bayliff was jailed again for theft of a woman’s laptop.

Ten days later, he robbed the smoke shop.

“I think Bayliff’s quick returns to jail combined with the nature of the robbery created a picture in the jurors minds of a defendant with no intention of changing direction,” Catania said.  “In the three interviews Bayliff did with detectives, he never gave any indication of remorse or indicated that he had any life goals.”

Bayliff was expected to be eligible for parole in 25 years, according to Parker County District Attorney Don Schnebly.

“The sentence in this case is consistent with the stand Parker County jurors have always taken against violent crime,” Schnebly said.