FLORENCE — A Florence teenager accused of stabbing a 14-year-old to death during a party in March has been indicted on murder charges, authorities said.
The murder indictment was issued against Autumn Marie Wood, 17, Lauderdale 6, Florence, during a grand jury session last week, Lauderdale County District Attorney Chris Connolly said.
Authorities said Wood is accused of stabbing Brooklyn Ann Hollins, 14, Cole Street, Florence, during a party on Winona Street in Florence on March 24.
Hollins was pronounced dead at the scene. Authorities said she was stabbed once in the chest.
Police said there were no adults at the party.
Based on testimony at Wood’s preliminary hearing in June, there were about 18 people there, all underage. Testimony at the hearing also revealed alcohol was prevalent at the party.
Florence police detective Jerry Pearson said the homeowner was not at home when the incident happened and unaware his daughter was holding a party.
Reports indicate two fights reportedly broke out at the residence, and Pearson said the stabbing occurred during the second one, which happened around 3:55 a.m.
Pearson testified at the preliminary hearing the fight reportedly started between a friend of Wood and a friend of Hollins. He said witnesses statements indicate Wood got involved and then Hollins came to the aid of her friend.
He said Hollins and Wood ended up fighting on the floor of the kitchen.
Witnesses told police Hollins ended up on her back with Wood sitting on top of her and hitting her in the face. During the fight, witnesses said another friend of Hollins started hitting Wood in an effort to get her off Hollins.
“Then someone saw Wood with a knife and Brooklyn was bleeding,” Pearson said.
He said witnesses told investigators that Hollins then sat up and said “she stabbed me.”
Pearson testified that Wood told authorities she grabbed a pot and started swinging it because more than one person was attacking her.
Wood was arrested after her grandmother brought her to the Police Department to be questioned.
Connolly said Wood’s murder trial could be heard in the second half of 2013.
Murder is a Class A felony and punishable by 10 years to life in prison, if convicted.
Wood remains out of jail on bail of $50,000.
Tom Smith can be reached at 256-740-5757 or tom.smith@Times Daily.com.