Rocky Ali Beamon was sentenced to death in Jackson County for first-degree premeditated murder, the State Attorney's Office announced Monday.

The conviction and sentence arose from the July 5, 2012, murder of Bruce Hunsicker at the Apalachee Correctional Institution in Sneads. Beamon and Hunsicker were both inmates, and subsequent confessions by Beamon revealed that the motive for the murder was primarily Hunsicker’s status as a sex offender, according to a press release. Hunsicker also owed Beamon money.

After watching the victim for several days to learn his schedule, Beamon killed Hunsicker in the shower area of the prison dormitory by approaching him from behind, choking him and stabbing him 80 times with a homemade shank. Beamon then rinsed himself off and flushed the shank, a towel and a pair of boxers, after which he proceeded to dinner.

Beamon entered a guilty plea to first-degree premeditated murder and waived his right to a jury trial for guilt and sentencing. A penalty phase judge trial was then held on Dec. 17, 2018. The state presented evidence of the heinousness of the killing as well as details regarding Beamon’s prior criminal history, which included 2005 convictions for murder, kidnapping and robbery in Hillsborough County for which Beamon was sentenced to life in prison.

Christopher N. Patterson, Circuit Judge of the 14th Judicial Circuit, determined that death was the appropriate sentence.

The investigation was conducted by the Inspector General’s Office of the Department of Corrections with assistance from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

Assistant State Attorney Clifton Drake was responsible for the prosecution, with assistance from Assistant State Attorney Jack Schlechter and Chief Assistant State Attorney Bill Bishop. All three attorneys are employed by the 1st Judicial Circuit but were cross-designated with the 14th Judicial Circuit for the prosecution of this case.

Serving Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Walton counties, State Attorney Bill Eddins also indicated that Rocky Beamon is under investigation for an additional killing that occurred in January of 2017 while Beamon was incarcerated at the Santa Rosa Correctional Institution.

The state intends to seek an indictment for first-degree murder in that case and also intends to seek a death sentence.