Donna Jackson was on the phone with a 911 dispatcher last month when a shot was fired that killed 53-year-old Ricky Smith.
Jackson, 45, and Smith had been dating about two years, but on the night of Sept. 5, Jackson contends that Smith became agitated while they were at a restaurant and lounge.
He was still angry when the couple returned to Jackson’s home on Macon Avenue, off Napier Avenue near Hillcrest Boulevard, her lawyer said at a Thursday hearing in Bibb County Superior Court.
Jackson retrieved a gun and continued trying to reason with Smith. They moved from room to room.
At some point, Smith grabbed two knives from the kitchen and chased Jackson into the living room, where she called 911, her lawyer, Cheryl Milton, said.
Jackson reported the situation and Smith seemed to calm down, but he became agitated again after she hung up, mad that she had given the authorities his name.
Jackson called 911 again and was on the line when she said Smith lunged at her with a knife in each hand. She fired one shot, stopping him, Milton said.
Jackson was charged with murder and has been held at the county jail without bond since then.
A judge set her bond at $100,000 as part of Thursday’s hearing. If released, she’ll be required to remain at home with few exceptions, and she must wear an ankle monitor at her own expense. She’s also barred from having weapons.
Jackson also can’t contact Smith’s family, some of whom live next door to her.
Prosecutor Larissa Olliverre argued against the bond’s being set, citing concerns from Smith’s family and inconsistencies in Jackson’s statement to police.
Although Jackson has said she told a 911 dispatcher that Smith was coming at her with a knife, the transcript from the call says Jackson reported Smith was coming at her with a gun, Olliverre said.
Smith can be heard in the background saying, “What are you talking about? You’re the one with the gun. I don’t have a gun,” Olliverre said.
On the second call, she told the 911 center that Smith was coming at her with a knife, she said.
When police arrived, they found Smith on the floor with a knife underneath each arm.
Jackson also contends she told a cousin she was “terrified” of Smith, but when questioned by police the cousin denied having the conversation, Olliverre said.
While at the sheriff’s office, she was recorded on video talking with the cousin, seemingly coaching him to stick with her side of the story, Olliverre said.
Milton said the cousin’s wife has confirmed that Jackson told her and her husband that she was afraid of Smith.
Left alone in a sheriff’s office interview room, Jackson was recorded on video kneeling and crying, covering her face with her hands, Olliverre said.
When investigators returned, they asked her to uncover her face.
“There were no tears. No dried up tears. Nothing,” Olliverre said. “They believe she faked all that. All that crying.”
Jackson has admitted she put the gun down multiple times while trying to reason with Smith and that he didn’t touch her, Olliverre said.
Authorities have talked with two of Smith’s ex-girlfriends, one who dated him for 18 years and another who was with him for eight years. Both of them said Smith was never violent toward them, Olliverre said.
Olliverre said Jackson, who travels to New Jersey a couple times a month, is a flight risk.
Jackson’s parents and children live in New Jersey. She doesn’t own property in Macon. The rental contract for her home is in another person’s name, she said.
Milton maintained that Jackson acted in self-defense.
“She did everything she was supposed to do ... to protect herself and to try to avoid this situation,” she said. “She obviously was not going to stand there and allow him to stab her, which he said he was going to do.”
o contact writer Amy Leigh Womack, call 744-4398.