Stone Mountain man gets prison time for murder

A Stone Mountain man was sentenced to more than two decades behind bars after his conviction for murder, according to a May 8 announcement from DeKalb County District Attorney Sherry Boston.

On April 15, jurors found Drew Brooks, 40, guilty of voluntary manslaughter, felony murder, two counts of aggravated assault, and two counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony in connection to the shooting death of Ashley Watkins, 33, on May 25, 2022.

DeKalb County Superior Court Judge Tangela Barrie presided over the trial and sentenced Brooks to 25 years in custody and an additional 10 years on probation.

According to the investigation, officers with DeKalb County Police Department responded to a call about a person shot in the 4000 block of Autumn Circle in Stone Mountain. When they arrived, they found Watkins lying in the street suffering from a gunshot wound to her abdomen.

A news release states that Watkins made multiple unsuccessful requests for a Temporary Protective Order against Brooks while the two lived together.

According to witnesses at the scene, Watkins and Brooks were involved in an argument that escalated to violence. Brooks reportedly shot Watkins and also pointed a gun at a second woman who lived in the home with Watkins, threatening to kill her.

Brooks allegedly claimed the shooting was in self-defense after he said Watkins pointed a gun at him. A news release states that video of the incident showed Watkins holding her keys.

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