FLORENCE, AL (WAFF) - Shoals teen Autumn Marie Wood pleaded guilty to manslaughter for the 2012 stabbing death of another teen.
Wood stabbed 14-year-old Brooklyn Hollins to death at a house party in Florence last year. She was originally charged with murder. Jury selection was set to begin Monday.
District Attorney Chris Connolly said the plea agreement came about after Wednesday's motions hearing. The victim's family felt it would be too painful to go through a trial, and decided this would be a better option because it would guarantee two things: certainty that Wood would go to prison and be held accountable for her actions, and finality with the case, in that there would not be any appeals.
During the hearing, Wood's attorney said she took the deal so she wouldn't have to run the risk of going to trial and facing a much harsher charge and sentence.
"We looked at the sentencing guidelines, and a 10.5 year sentence is exactly in the middle of the voluntary sentencing guidelines so that was the figure we agreed on. Under the old system, she would have been looking at two to 20 years," said Connolly.
Wood was released on bond and left the courtroom with her family.
Sentencing is set for Dec. 19.