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Williams v. State

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

March 31, 2015

TWONIA RENEE WILLIAMS A/K/A TWONIA WILLIAMS A/K/A TWONIA R. WILLIAMS, APPELLANT
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, APPELLEE

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: HARRISON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT. DATE OF JUDGMENT: 02/27/2014. TRIAL JUDGE: HON. ROGER T. CLARK. TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: CONVICTED OF MURDER AND SENTENCED TO LIFE IN THE CUSTODY OF THE MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS.

FOR APPELLANT: OFFICE OF STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER, BY: BENJAMIN ALLEN SUBER.

FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, BY: LISA L. BLOUNT.

BEFORE GRIFFIS, P.J., ROBERTS AND FAIR, JJ. LEE, C.J., IRVING AND GRIFFIS, P.JJ., BARNES, ISHEE, ROBERTS, CARLTON, MAXWELL AND JAMES, JJ., CONCUR.

OPINION

Page 1079

NATURE OF THE CASE: CRIMINAL - FELONY

FAIR, J.

[¶1] A jury in the Harrison County Circuit Court found Twonia Williams guilty of murder.[1] The trial court sentenced Williams to life imprisonment. Williams now appeals, asserting that (1) the evidence was insufficient to support the verdict, and (2) the verdict is against the overwhelming weight of the evidence. Finding no error, we affirm.

FACTS

[¶2] Williams and Sean Lindsay started dating in 2005. In late November 2009, Williams discovered Sean cheating on her with another woman -- Katrina Sargent. Williams immediately kicked Sean out of her house, who immediately moved in with Katrina, her three children, and her niece, Stacey McCall.

[¶3] On the night of December 4, 2009, Williams was looking for Sean. She was upset because she heard that Katrina was driving Sean's truck, which she had helped pay off three months prior. Williams wanted her money back. She called Sean several times. He put one call on speaker phone. Katrina's niece, Stacey, overheard Williams say she was " going to come over there and blow up everybody in the house." Sean eventually turned his phone off, so Williams drove to Katrina's house. She grew more upset when she saw Christmas lights on Katrina's house, because Sean, a proclaimed Muslim, never allowed Christmas lights on their house when they lived together. Williams drove by and " saw the screen door fly open, and . . . thought maybe . . . Sean was coming out to talk with [her]." Instead, Katrina and her niece came outside and walked toward Williams. Stacey saw a gun in Williams's lap and told Katrina. Williams got out of the car with the gun behind her back, asking for Sean. Katrina and Stacey walked back towards the house, and Katrina said she was going to call the police. Williams replied, " I don't give a f***," pointed the gun at Katrina's head, and pulled the trigger.

[¶4] Williams was indicted for deliberate-design murder. At trial, Williams testified on her own behalf. She said that Katrina cursed at her and told her to leave, and an argument ensued. Williams admitted shooting Katrina, but said that she drove to Katrina's house to see Sean, not to shoot Katrina. Williams testified that she shot Katrina out of anger during a heated argument and with no premeditation.

[¶5] The jury received instructions on murder and heat-of-passion manslaughter. Williams was found guilty of murder. Additional facts will be ...


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