XENIA — Ohio’s new “stand your ground” laws will not apply in the murder trial of Talicia Dixon, even as her attorneys seek her acquittal by reason of self-defense.
Witness testimony in Greene County Common Pleas Court this week indicated an altercation at the Round Table Bar may be key in what attorneys describe as a “complicated case.”
Dixon, 30, has been charged with murder and felonious assault for the shooting death of Andre Nooks. She is alleged to have shot Nooks around 1:30 a.m. on May 5, 2018. Nooks survived the incident, but the gunshot wound through the neck left him quadriplegic and on a ventilator. Nooks died on Jan. 17, 2019 from complications due to quadriplegia.
Dixon has the burden of proof of self-defense in this case. Under the law, Dixon had the “duty to retreat,” a stipulation of Ohio self-defense law that was removed on April 4 this year.
Jurors reviewed video footage from the inside of the bar on Home Avenue in Xenia, where witnesses said a verbal argument between Dixon and several others took place. According to witness testimony, a fight involving several people then broke out outside the establishment, before Dixon retreated to her cousin’s home in the 400 block of Franklin Avenue in Xenia.
Later that evening, multiple cars, including one carrying Nooks, arrived outside the residence on Franklin Avenue, where Dixon is alleged to have pulled the trigger. Jurors also reviewed police body cam footage from when officers arrived at the scene, but cameras captured no physical altercation from either the Round Table or the scene of the shooting.
Witness accounts differ as to which party in the fight outside the Round Table Bar was the initial aggressor, attorneys said. Dixon’s defense said the incident was not the first time Dixon had a run-in with this group of individuals.
“This is the first time we’ve been able to tell our side of the story,” said L. Patrick Mulligan, Dixon’s defense attorney. “You have a 10-year history of a mob of people who have harmed not only Talicia, but her cousin, Kendra. They beat the living tar out of her at the Round Table Bar, and then they hunted her down. They came looking for trouble, and they got it.”
However, prosecutors said there is little doubt, even among both parties, that Dixon pulled the trigger.
“We are here to hold her accountable for her actions,” said Greene County Assistant Prosecutor Michele Henne.
The defense further alleges that inadequate medical care in the months after the shooting contributed to Nooks’ death. Prosecutors disagree.
“The overwhelming bulk of medical evidence has demonstrated that he died of complications of his gunshot wound,” Greene County Assistant Prosecutor Bill Morrison said.
Ohio’s new self-defense laws, commonly referred to as “stand-your-ground” laws, eliminate the “duty to retreat” required by an individual acting in self defense, as long that person is in a place where they lawfully have a right to be. As Dixon’s case was not grandfathered in under these new rules, her self-defense acquittal must meet the following requirements: She was not at fault in creating the situation; there was a threat of imminent or immediate death; there was a not a reasonable means of retreat; and the use of such force was reasonable.
The case is presided over by Judge Michael Buckwalter. Closing arguments are expected Monday morning.
Reach London Bishop at 937-502-4532 or follow @LBishopFDH on Twitter.