Woman’s Facebook Post Leads Grandson to Kill Man

A West Virginia man, aged 21, has been sentenced to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole for the murder of a 37-year-old man, a crime reportedly sparked by a Facebook post. Kayce R. Simms was handed down the sentence by Fayette County Circuit Judge Thomas H. Ewing on Thursday, following his conviction for the 2022 murder of Ashtin Owens.

Simms was found guilty of first-degree murder and the felony use or presentation of a firearm during the commission of a felony. In addition to his life sentence, Judge Ewing added a consecutive 10-year sentence for the firearm charge. Simms will be eligible for parole after serving a minimum of 17.5 years, 15 years for the murder and 2.5 years for the firearms charge.

The Fayette County, West Virginia Prosecuting Attorney’s Office reported that police were called to a residence in the 90 block of Teng Lane on November 21, 2022, following reports of a shooting. The house is located approximately 50 miles northwest of Charleston, West Virginia.

Upon arrival, first responders found Owens with multiple gunshot wounds. He was airlifted to a trauma center in Charleston, but despite efforts to save him, he died shortly after arrival.

The fatal shooting was reportedly the result of a dispute between Simms’ grandmother and Owens, which was subsequently posted on Facebook. According to the prosecutors, Simms obtained a firearm from an acquaintance after learning about the argument and went to Owens’ residence to confront him. After a brief altercation, Simms shot Owens twice and then fled the scene.

At the time of the shooting, there were three witnesses present in Owens’ home. Two of them were able to positively identify Simms as the shooter. Fayette County Prosecutor Anthony Ciliberti stated that there was no reason for this tragic event to occur, as Owens had done nothing more than argue with Simms’ grandmother.