Convicted murderer sentenced to 80 years for shooting ‘concerned father’ who confronted him for speeding in neighborhood

Joe Roy Cockerham III, 27, was sentenced to 80 years in prison for shooting a father to death, police said.
Joe Roy Cockerham III, 27, was sentenced to 80 years in prison for shooting a father to death, police said. (HPD)

HOUSTON – A man convicted of murdering a father who police say was concerned about the safety of the neighborhood children has been sentenced to 80 years in prison.

Joe Roy Cockerham III, 27, was arrested and charged in connection with the incident that happened around noon on April 28, 2017, officials said.

Witnesses told police that Cockerham and the victim, Alfred James, had gotten into an argument in the middle of the street. According to authorities, James was confronting Cockerham for driving too fast through the neighborhood, which is full of kids.

During the argument, Cockerham pulled out a pistol and shot James, officials said. James fell to the ground, at which point Cockerham “stood over him and shot him several more times in the head, then fled in a gold Chevrolet Impala.”

Assistant District Attorney Joshua Raygor said James’ daughter will grow up without a father because of Cockerham’s actions.

“That’s a hole that will never be filled,” Raygor said. “This was an execution-style killing. Eleven shots were fired. There were five shots to the back of the head after he was already down.”

Victim, Alfred James and his daughter. (HPD)

District Attorney Kim Ogg said the city is “absolutely plagued by gun violence.”

“Far too often someone takes out a gun and takes a life without a second thought to the consequences, and this verdict shows that our community is fed-up with this indiscriminate violence,” Ogg said.

Cockerham was sentenced to eight decades in prison after a three-day trial. He was previously convicted of indecency with a child, which means he faced a minimum punishment of 15 years in prison.


About the Author:

Daniela Sternitzky-Di Napoli has been a digital news editor at KPRC 2 since 2018. She is a published poet and has background in creative writing and journalism. Daniela has covered events like Hurricane Harvey and the Astros World Series win. In her spare time, Daniela is an avid reader and loves to spend time with her two miniature dachshunds.