The trial for a Livingston man accused of gunning down his ex-girlfriend following an argument in 2019 is set to begin next week.
Errol W. Hicks, 70, faces one charge of second-degree murder for the death of Carol Hutchinson, a beloved daycare owner in Livingston Parish who was killed by gunfire in September 2019.
Jury selection is set to begin Tuesday, Oct. 12, in 21st Judicial District Court. The trial was pushed back from its previously scheduled date in March of this year.
If convicted, Hicks faces life imprisonment without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.
The case involving Hicks goes back to Sept. 28, 2019, when Livingston Parish Sheriff’s deputies responded to a domestic disturbance on McLin Road in Livingston. According to Sheriff Jason Ard at the time, deputies discovered that “multiple rounds” had been fired at the scene, which is where they also found Hutchinson’s body.
Hicks, who was armed with a .380-caliber pistol, was arrested at the scene.
In court filings, prosecutors have said that Hicks shot Hutchinson, chased her down as she ran for help, and then shot her again. Prosecutors believe Hicks shot Hutchinson four times: once in the chest at his residence, a second time in the back when she ran to a neighbor’s house for help, and two more times in the head and the leg on another neighbor’s carport.
A grand jury later indicted Hicks on one count of second-degree murder.
Hicks, who has since pleaded not guilty to the charge, told deputies at the time that Hutchinson had pulled a gun on him first. In a subsequent court hearing, a deputy who arrived at the scene said police never found evidence that Hutchinson was ever armed during the encounter.
Local police had responded to at least two other incidents involving Hicks prior to his 2019 arrest — including one time in which he allegedly pointed a gun at his son. But no charges ever came from those situations.
The death of Hutchinson, who was 48, rocked her family members and friends, who have called her “a superhero” and “a loving woman.”
A longtime resident of Holden, Hutchinson was a director at Little Peoples Playstation Daycare in Livingston, and she also bred and sold dachshunds across the country. She was an avid photographer and had recently earned her private investigator’s badge prior to her death.
Hutchinson was also “a diehard Disney fan” who visited Disney World more than 20 times in the last 10 years of her life.
In her obituary, Hutchinson was described as “the real life version of Wonder Woman” whose “greatest passion in life was her family.” She was survived by three sons, her parents, three siblings, and three grandchildren, though a fourth was born after her passing. She also had numerous nieces, nephews, and special friends.
“Carol was an incredible mother, loving Maw Maw, and one of a kind woman,” her obituary said.