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Former Mansfield ISD student gets 12 years, $6,000 fine for 2021 school shooting

 A man sits in front of a microphone, turned to the right of the image in three-quarter view. A woman in the foreground is faced in the same direction.
CBS Texas
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Timothy Simpkins, 19, took the stand Monday, July 24, 2023, to testify about the 2021 shooting at Timberview High School for which he was convicted of shooting and injuring three people. Simpkins answered questions about his marijuana use and a robbery that prosecutors say motivated the school shooting.

A former Mansfield ISD student convicted of shooting three people at his high school in 2021 was sentenced to 12 years in prison and will have to pay a $6,000 fine.

Timothy Simpkins, 19, faced life in prison after jurors on Thursday found him guilty of attempted capital murder for the Timberview High School shooting.

Ahead of their final deliberation, Simpkins asked jurors to consider a lighter sentence.

"I understand what I did was wrong, very, very wrong, and I'm sorry. I truly am sorry," Simpkins said through tears. "I just ask for another chance."

Jurors heard from Timberview teachers and students, law enforcement officials and other witnesses over the course of the week-long trial.

After the sentence was read, victims were given the opportunity to read impact statements. One of the victims, Calvin Pettit, said he was glad that Simpkins did not receive a life sentence, and appreciated his apology — but added he was not ready to accept that apology.

"Your life is valuable, and you do deserve a second chance," Pettit said. "But not right now."

According to testimony and video evidence, the Oct. 6, 2021 shooting happened after Simpkins, then 18, got into a fight apparently initiated by fellow student Zacchaeus Selby, then 15. After teachers broke up the fight, Simpkins pulled out a gun and fired on Selby.

Pettit and student Shaniyah McNeely were also struck in the crossfire. All victims have recovered, though Pettit testified the bullet is still in his chest.

During the sentencing phase of the trial, prosecutors brought in video evidence of a September 2021 confrontation at RaceTrac in which Simpkins had been robbed and pistol-whipped. Video shows a person attorneys identify as Simpkins shooting at the attackers as they drove away.

The incident was allegedly tied to Selby’s brother Isaiah and another person referred to as “Ant.” Other evidence included messages and search history from Simpkins' phone following the robbery. He appeared to tell his friends he would “kill em both” and searched the internet for any news reports on the incident.

Prosecutors said this evidence proved Simpkins had planned to shoot someone at Timberview the next week.

Simpkins said he wanted the jury to know he’d just been acting out of fear and anger.

"Those two weeks, those searches, messages — it's not me, it's not who I am," Simpkins said. "If they knew me or even had a conversation with me, they'd know that's not me."

Simpkins' lawyers argued he shot in self-defense, though Judge Ryan Hill denied the request that self-defense be included in the jury charge. The lawyers also publicly said bullying played a role in the shooting, but Arlington police say they’ve found no evidence of that.

The defense also brought up Simpkins’ ex-girlfriend, godfathers and mother Katrina Roberson as witnesses Friday to testify about his character.

Roberson said her son had never been an aggressor and she was scared for him.

"He was about to get stomped on and no one helped him," Roberson said. "And they make like my son is the monster, but that other boy, Zac, he's the monster."

Both sides got to present closing arguments for the punishment phase of the trial Monday. Prosecuting attorney Rose Anne Salinas said there was no excuse for Simpkins to endanger Selby or other people at the school.

She encouraged jurors to choose the maximum sentence.

"We as a community — you as jurors — must send a message out, because we are tired of wringing our hands in desperation about these shootings," Salinas said. "And to do it in a school, a sacred place of learning, is even worse."

Got a tip? Email Toluwani Osibamowo at You can follow Toluwani on Twitter @tosibamowo.

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Toluwani Osibamowo is a general assignments reporter for KERA. She previously worked as a news intern for Texas Tech Public Media and copy editor for Texas Tech University’s student newspaper, The Daily Toreador, before graduating with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. She is originally from Plano.