Victim: Randolph Ragan Hicks
The accused: Charles Wesley Hammonds

Randolph Ragan_Hicks

Randolph Ragan Hicks

White male

Age at time: 41

Weapon: oar

 
Hammonds

Charles Wesley Hammonds

White male

Age at time: 45

Weapon: knife

knife

Defendant photo: Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, 2011

Case type:
Argument turned violent

Location:
Public

Initiator:
Disputed

Witnesses:
Yes

Case year:
2007

Location details: SeaWalk in Jacksonville Beach, Duval County, on Jan. 22, 2007

What happened: Charles Wesley Hammonds, a homeless man who had more than a dozen arrests in his past, stabbed another homeless man on the public beach walkway in Jacksonville Beach. Hammonds said he was defending himself from Randolph Ragan Hicks, who he said smashed his head with an oar after a dispute over beer. Hicks said Hammonds ambushed him by pretending to shake his hand then slashing him with a knife. Hicks had a collapsed lung but survived. Witness testimony clashed with Hicks' version of events. And Hammonds had a head injury consistent with being hit by a blunt object.

The outcome: Charges dropped. Based on the witnesses' accounts, the knifing could be viewed as acceptable use of force, prosecutors said.

Case decision made by: Prosecutor

Trayvon Martin’s death became controversial because circumstances leading up to the shooting cast doubt on who was to blame. The Tampa Bay Times reviewed other “stand your ground” cases for similar circumstances. The Times relied on available information, some of which may not tell the whole story. When the situation was unclear, that was noted.

Yes No Unclear/
disputed

Did the victim initiate the confrontation?

Check

Was the victim armed?

Check

Was the victim committing a crime that led to the confrontation?

Check

Did the defendant pursue the victim?

Check

Could the defendant have retreated to avoid the conflict?

Check

Was the defendant on his or her property?

Check

Did someone witness the attack?

Check

Was there physical evidence?

Check

Source: Times Union, March 10, 2007.

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Case last updated: Aug. 10, 2013