Duo pleads ‘not guilty’

Published 4:30 am Wednesday, June 8, 2016

2 charged in February death of middle schooler

The mother and daughter charged in the hit-and-run death of a W.S. Neal Middle School student in February have pleaded not guilty.

Donnavia Williams, 17, and her mother, Jennifer, were indicted in April by the Escambia County grand jury in the death of 12-year-old Devon Spencer. Spencer and a friend were walking to school from a neighboring apartment complex when family said the boys were hit from behind on Thurs., Feb. 11. The friend suffered minor injuries, while Spencer suffered significant head trauma and a host of other injuries. Spencer later died from his injuries at Sacred Heart Hospital’s trauma unit.

Court records show the two women each pleaded “not guilty” before Judge Dave Jordan and are represented by attorney Joe Jordan.

Miss Williams, who at the time was a W.S. Neal senior and the driver of the vehicle, is charged with manslaughter, a Class B felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison; leaving the scene of an accident with injuries, failure to report an accident with injuries and assault II, each a Class C felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. She was booked into the Escambia County Detention Center and later released on a $150,000 bond.

Mrs. Williams is charged with failure to report an accident with injuries and was released on a $25,000 bond. She allegedly told her daughter to continue to school and not report the accident.

The soonest the two will appear in court is the Aug. 8 call docket; however, both the state and prosecution must be ready to go to trial if that occurs.