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Dickerson pleas to manslaughter in death of father


Jenna Cherish Dickerson, charged with first-degree murder in the November 2011 death of John Derek Hamlin, pled guilty on Tuesday to a lesser charge of manslaughter.



The plea agreement calls for Dickerson, 28, of Wichita Falls, to serve 10 years community supervision.

Hamlin, who is Dickerson’s father, died in the early morning hours of Sunday, Nov. 13, 2011, from a gunshot wound to the chest.

Dickerson was arrested Nov. 14, 2011, following an interview with a Texas Ranger and the 97th District Attorney’s investigator. During the interview, Dickerson said she cocked and pointed the pistol at her father as he walked toward her, and fired the gun one time.

Deputies found Hamlin’s body inside his home at 4149 FM 2393, north of Dean, while responding to a report of a domestic disturbance. Hamlin’s girlfriend, Gina Maria Taylor, reported the disturbance, telling a Clay County Sheriff’s Office dispatcher that her “best friend had just shot her dad, and he is dying.”

The deputy first to arrive on scene was flagged down by Taylor, and found Dickerson lying on a concrete porch outside of the residence. Dickerson gestured to the deputy that Hamlin was inside. The deputy found Hamlin dead in the master bedroom with a 22-caliber pistol nearby.

Dickerson also told the deputy that Hamlin “had been hitting Gina,” according to an arrest warrant affidavit. A source close to the investigation said Dickerson was cornered in the master bedroom closet when the gun was fired.

At the time of his death, Hamlin faced a misdemeanor assault charge for a Jan. 24, 2011 incident, according to court records.


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The Pioneer Sentinel is an online newspaper designed to deliver the news of Clay County, Texas, in a concise and community-friendly format.

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