The university community is still in shock over the death of Florida A&M women’s basketball shooting guard, Shannon Washington, who died Sunday morning after being stabbed in the neck.
Tallahassee Police arrived at 3025 South Adams St. in response to a stabbing and found Washington in her University Courtyard apartment. She was treated on the scene by police and was taken to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital where she was pronounced dead.
Police reported 20-year-old Starquineshia Palmer, who was visiting Washington, was arrested at the scene and charged with first-degree murder. The two were arguing, which escalated and resulted in the violence.
A vigil was held Sunday night in Lee Hall Auditorium. Local athletes and the FAMU student body gathered in great numbers to show respect and commemorate the life of Washington. FAMU’s women’s basketball coach, LeDawn Gibson, was one of many in attendance who showed great sadness and expressed her love and admiration for the young star.
“It is truly a trying situation to lose a student-athlete that has come to us to further her education and excel at her sport. She came to us with a with a great attitude and was a hard worker. She will be missed,” Gibson said.
Tallahassee Police Department spokesman Officer Derek Friend said Washington and Palmer were reportedly in a domestic relationship.
“At the scene everyone in and around the apartment was kind of dazed and shocked by what happened and how far this incident went. It was a really tragic outcome,” Friend said.
Authorities said Palmer had been visiting for several days, but they don’t not know how long she had been there or when she planned to leave.
Palmer, who is being held in the Leon County Jail, was arraigned before Judge James Hankinson Sunday morning. Reports indicate that Palmer will be represented by public defender Steven Been. At the hearing, no bond was set and Palmer was ordered to take a drug test.
Henry Kirby, associate vice president for student affairs and dean of students, said he spoke with Washington’s mother on behalf of the university.
“I had the opportunity to talk to her mother on Sunday to relay the heartfelt condolences of the university and the student body,” Kirby said.
SGA President Breyon Love offered words of encouragement. “It’s a sad moment whenever we lose a fellow Rattler in any aspect,” Love said.
Funeral information was not yet available.