Humboldt man found guilty in 2012 cold case murder

HUMBOLDT, Tenn. — A Humboldt man has been found guilty of second degree murder in a cold case from 2012.

A news release states that on Friday, September 9, 2022, a Gibson County Jury found Benjamin “Ben” Bryer guilty of second degree murder.

The charge stems from the strangulation killing of 49-year-old James Patrick Calene at a residence on Jim Jackson Road in Humboldt on March 30, 2012.

Bryer was indicted for the murder nearly five years later on January 4, 2017.

The release states Judge Clayburn Peeples requested a Senior Judge from the Court of Judiciary preside over the trial, due to a separate murder trial taking place at the same time in Haywood County.

Bryer, who is facing up to 25 years in prison for the conviction, will be sentenced by Senior Judge Don Ash on November 14, 2022.

“We are thankful for the Jurors and that they saw the case how we did. This was a cold case that our office and investigators were able to put the pieces of the puzzle together. Generals Kirk and Seiler are not only professional, they are the best of the best when it comes to jury trials,” said District Attorney General Frederick H. Agee, 28th Judicial District. “Also, we are thankful that Judge Peeples requested another Judge so Byrer could be tried without having to reset it again. Our highest priority is prosecuting violent crime and we will continue to focus on removing people that are threats to our peaceful communities.”

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Kirk and Nina Seiler.

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Categories: Crime, Gibson County, Local News, News