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Local News

October 29, 2012

Appeals court to hear Alphin case

GREENVILLE — A state appeals court is scheduled next month to hear arguments involving the capital murder conviction of a Quinlan woman, who was sentenced last year to life in prison without parole for a 2008 shooting death as part of a robbery.

The Sixth Court of Appeals in Texarkana is set consider the case of Tracie Danielle Alphin, who was found guilty in November of last year of shooting and killing Jason Herrington.

A jury in the 354th District Court took only about 30 minutes to find Alphin guilty of capital murder. As the prosecution was not seeking the death penalty in the case, Alphin was automatically sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Alphin’s alleged co-actor,  David Earl Hickman of Royse City, pleaded guilty to a lesser included charge of murder and received a life prison sentence. Hickman  testified against Alphin during the trial.

The indictments filed against Alphin and Hickman allege Herrington, 34, was killed on Oct. 19, 2008 while the defendants were in the course of committing a robbery. Herrington’s body was discovered early on the morning of Nov. 25, 2008 along County Road 2276, off of Farm-To-Market Road 36.

Investigators were led to the scene by Hickman. Herrington died of multiple gunshot wounds.

Hickman and Alphin were alleged to have murdered Herrington and to have left his body on the side of the road. The pair allegedly then sold both the gun used in the murder and the vehicle which Herrington was driving. Herrington was attempting to flee from the scene, after Alphin pulled a gun on him while in the process of stealing a car. Alphin then handed the gun to Hickman, who also shot Herrington.

The Sixth Court of Appeals decides civil and criminal appeals arising primarily in its 19 county district, which includes most of northeast Texas, including Hunt County.

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