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Man shoots pregnant woman and child over abortion

Nathaniel Elijah Dixon (Photo Credit: Asheville Police Department)

Nathaniel Elijah Dixon (Photo credit: Asheville Police Department)

A senseless crime has rocked the community of Asheville, North Carolina. A woman was killed and her 3-year-old son was critically injured by an abusive boyfriend. Candace Pickens, 23, was found dead with a gunshot wound to head and police have arrested Nathaniel Elijah Dixon, 24, for the heinous crime. According to her family Pickens was pregnant with her second child and although she was facing a financial and emotional hardship she was determined to go through with the pregnancy. Apparently, this decision infuriated Dixon, who has a violent criminal history and was allegedly abusive toward Pickens. He demanded that she abort the pregnancy and she refused.

Candace Pickens and her son Zachaeus (Photo Credit: Facebook/Candace Pickens)

Candace Pickens and her son Zachaeus (Photo credit: Facebook/Candace Pickens)

The police will not speculate if Pickens’ refusal to get an abortion was the motivation for Dixon shooting her, but her family insists that was the cause of her death. It is alleged that Dixon confronted her in a local park and not only shot her in the head but also shot the woman’s 3-year-old son in the face. The child was rushed to a hospital and underwent emergency brain surgery for his injuries and is clinging to life. After shooting the mother and child, Dixon fled to Columbus, Ohio, but police were able to track him down. A few hours before he was arrested, he posted a series of messages to his Facebook account where he states, “Candace Pickens was pregnant with my child just so y’all stupid mfs know this morning i lost my child too.” He also posted a video of him smoking a blunt with a female friend and laughing, totally oblivious to the charges he was facing. Shockingly, his page has posts from friends who are supporting him in light of the accusations that have been leveled against him by police.

Dixon’s criminal past includes attempted armed robbery and an assault charge from allegations that he attempted to kill another woman with whom he had a child. Asheville police also say that he is a violent member of a Los Angeles-based street gang, the 4 Tre Gangster Crips.

A GoFundMe account has been established by members of  Pickens’ family for the support of her son, Zachaeus.