A news blog for Seattle's Phinney Ridge and Greenwood neighborhoods

 

Charges filed today in death of Phinney Ridge woman

December 29th, 2011 · No Comments

The King County Prosecutor’s Office will file charges today against a 48-year-old man in the death of Phinney Ridge resident Prudence Hockley.

Hockley was assaulted on Christmas Eve outside her home, and died at Harborview Medical Center on Christmas Day.

Update 2:55 p.m.: The King County Prosecutor just filed charges of second degree murder.

Charge filed in Seattle domestic violence homicide–A charge of Murder Second Degree was filed this afternoon against Johnnie Lee Wiggins, who is accused in the beating death of his girlfriend, Prudence Hockley, in Seattle on Christmas Eve. With the charges, prosecutors also filed an allegation that the murder was committed within the presence of a minor, the victim’s 13-year-old daughter, which can be used as a basis for an exceptional sentence. Although the standard range is up to approximately 20 years, the defendant could face an exceptional sentence above the standard range up to life in prison if convicted as charged. Wiggins, 48, remains in jail on $5 million bail. He will be arraigned on January 12 at 8:30 a.m. in courtroom 1201 at the King County Courthouse.

Update: According to the charging documents, Wiggins became enraged when he found Hockley at home watching TV with another man whom she had been seeing on-and-off for several years.

A witness told police that Hockley told him that Wiggins was controlling and jealous of other men, and that the two had a physical fight at her home on Dec. 23.

An autopsy showed she died from “numerous extremely forceful blows to her face and head.”

Hockley and Wiggins met last summer at a gym where Hockley was a member and Wiggins was an employee.

Wiggins has a 1999 conviction in Washington for possession of stolen property. He has three assault convictions and one breaking or entering conviction in North Carolina. In Georgia, he was convicted of obstructing a police officer, misdemeanor battery, public indecency/indecent exposure, battery, shoplifting, and aggravated assault.

Police found a large quantity of anabolic steroids in Wiggins’ home.

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