Wilson’s attorneys claim that on June 14, 2020, he was harassed, called racial slurs, and almost run off the road in his car by three White males in a pickup truck in Statesboro, Georgia. To protect him and his girlfriend, who was in the passenger seat, he fired his handgun at the truck in hopes that they would go away.
One of the bullets hit and killed 17-year-old Haley Hutcheson, who Wilson didn’t know was in the pickup truck. Wilson then turned himself into police three days later and was charged with felony murder and aggravated assault.
Georgia is considered a “stand your ground” state, where a person can use deadly force whenever they reasonably believe it to be necessary to defend against certain violent crimes. Wilson’s defense attorneys tried to claim the death was a result of self-defense, but the effort fell short.
Wilson was found not guilty on the charges of felony murder and aggravated assault that he originally faced, but was convicted of felony involuntary manslaughter. A felony manslaughter conviction carries a penalty from one to 10 years in prison, but prosecutors pushed for and got the maximum sentence.