The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

December 3, 2012

Athens Police guarded on murder details

By Karen Middleton
For The News Courier

— Athens Police continue to closely guard details on what they say is the murder of a 32-year-old woman found dead in her Elmwood Apartments unit off East Elm Street.

Police Chief Floyd Johnson said Monday that detectives continue to confer over details on the death of Sharon Wellington before releasing in-depth details about the crime or the victim

“We are beginning to get a lot of times and information in that are relevant to the case,” said Johnson.

Police were called Friday night at 7 p.m. after the body of Wellington was discovered by friends, who were concerned when they hadn’t heard from Wellington for a couple of days.

Wellington reportedly lived alone in the apartment.

Johnson continued to decline to state the circumstances of Wellington’s death, saying he is waiting on a report from Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences Lab in Huntsville, where the body was sent for an autopsy.

Johnson did confirm that the murdered woman had not been shot. He also said he could not say if she had been sexually assaulted until he receives the forensic report.

“Part of the reason that we are not saying anything is that when you get too much information out there, other people can cloud the issue,” said Johnson.

He said he hopes to be able to release the cause of death and the estimated time of death Tuesday.

Johnson said Wellington has no family in Athens, and that her family lives in South Carolina.

“She had met some people here on the Internet and thought Athens would be a good place to live, so she moved here,” said Johnson.

The chief said that while Wellington had been employed, she was not currently working anywhere.

News reports over the weekend stated that Wellington had joined Southside Church of Christ in Rogersville about a year ago and church members had described her as having a “bubbly” personality and that she enjoyed writing poetry. Her Facebook page also said she was a graduate of World Bible College.

Anyone who has had contact with the victim or who has information about the case is asked to call the Athens Police Department at 256-233-8700.