Pretty, ambitious, 24-year-old law student Adrienne
Hickson was looking forward to a career in criminal law, and to
spending her life with her college sweetheart, Shawn Washington. After
college, she got into a prestigious law school in Washington, D.C.
while Shawn got a full-time job in Atlanta. They stayed together
despite the 600 miles separating them. But, after a year apart, the
long-distance relationship was showing signs of strain. When Adrienne
went to Atlanta to visit Shawn in December, 2005, they fought
constantly. She began to time him when he went out and called
constantly to keep tabs on him.
On December 21, after a loud argument in the
parking lot of Shawn's apartment, the two decided to take the fight
inside. Ten minutes later, Shawn stumbled back out, covered in blood
and clutching his shoulder. While friends rushed him to the hospital,
Adrienne got in her car and went home to her family in South Carolina.
She came back on Christmas night to visit Shawn in the hospital but
discovered he was dead -- and there was a warrant out for her arrest.
In June, 2007, the former law student found herself
in a courtroom, not as an attorney, but as a defendant. Her defense
claimed she was a battered woman; the prosecutor said that Adrienne
was the one with a history of violence. When the jury deadlocked,
Adrienne took an Alford plea, which meant she accepted punishment,
without admitting guilt. She was sentenced to five years in prison.
Woman charged in slaying
The Augusta Chronicle
December 30, 2005
AIKEN - A 24-year-old Aiken woman is sitting in a
Georgia jail on a murder charge, accused of stabbing her boyfriend
four days before Christmas.
Adrienne Emily Hickson, of the 200 block of Magnolia Lake Road, was
arrested by Gwinnett County police on Christmas Day and charged with
murder and aggravated assault.
Gwinnett County police say she stabbed Shawn Washington, 24,
several times Dec. 21 at his apartment in the 3400 block of Sweetwater
Road in Duluth, Ga.
He died on Christmas Day at Gwinnett Medical Center, said Cpl.
Darren Moloney, a spokesman for the Gwinnett County Police Department.
Ms. Hickson is being held without bond at Gwinnett County Detention
Isaac Washington, Mr. Washington's brother, said the couple began
fighting because Ms. Hickson believed her boyfriend of several years
was having an affair.
"She just started acting crazy, trying to bite him and stuff for no
reason," he said.
The couple had been living together in Duluth, he said. Ms. Hickson
- who gave police an Aiken address when arrested - had returned from
her studies at Howard University's law school in Washington, D.C., he
Howard University officials confirmed her status as a student
According to a police report, Shawn Washington was stabbed multiple
times, including in the chest, and was taken to a hospital by friends.
Police issued an arrest warrant for Ms. Hickson for aggravated
assault the day of the stabbing, Cpl. Moloney said, but "she was not
found until Christmas Day, when she went to the hospital."
That's when she learned Shawn Washington had died, he said, and she
The police report states that Ms. Hickson "passed out" upon
learning of Shawn Washington's death and was put in a wheelchair in a
"quiet room" by hospital staff after "causing a scene in the emergency
room" and running into a glass door.
She'd also dressed herself in hospital scrubs to disguise herself
as an employee, the report states.
Isaac Washington said he hadn't spoken with her family but said his
family was "hurting."
Central High Graduate Stabbed To Death In
Thursday, December 29, 2005
Funeral services are
Monday for a 2000 Central High School graduate who was stabbed to
death in Atlanta just before Christmas.
will be at Taylor Funeral Home for Shawn Washington, 24.
His girlfriend, Adrienne Emily Hickson, 24, of Aiken, S.C., has been
charged with his murder.
He was stabbed Dec. 21 in
his Duluth apartment. A friend of the victim told the Atlanta Journal
Constitution that she and her boyfriend were sitting outside in a car
when it happened.
Monique Doss of Lawrenceville said
Mr. Washington had gone to tell the girlfriend she needed to gather
her things and leave.
Ms. Doss said he returned after about 10 minutes,
bleeding and with a blank look on his face. He said the girlfriend had
stabbed him and he kept saying, "I'm gone, I'm gone," as they drove to
the hospital, she told the newspaper.
Constitution said Ms. Hickman, who is a law student at Howard
University in Washington, D.C., found out her boyfriend had died when
she went to visit him in the hospital on Christmas Day. She was
arrested that day.
The couple had begun dating when
they were both students at Tennessee State University. A brother of
the victim told the newspaper they had a stormy relationship.
Shawn Washington drove a bread truck for the
Flowers Baking Company in Lilburn.
He was a member of Trinity Baptist Church, where he
served on the Usher Board.
His late grandfather was Woodroe Washington.
Survivors include his mother, Karien Sewell;
father, Isaac (Patricia) Washington; sisters, Chiara Beck, Chekilla
Miller; brother, Isaac T. Washington; grandparents, Florence Sewell
and Eddie Mae Washington; aunts, Bettye Moss, Gwendolyn (Melvin)
Ruffin, Darlene (Sylvester) Ware, Elizabeth Ray, Henrietta Hines,
Maryann Washington, Annie Lee Washington; and uncles, Chestley Sewell,
Gregory Sewell, Dale Sewell, Monroe Washington, Johnnie Washington,
Charles Stevens and Henry Stevens.
will be at noon in the chapel with Pastor Steve Underwood officiating.
Burial will be at Forest Hills Cemetery.