The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

May 9, 2013

Governor’s office offering $5,000 reward in Wellington murder case

Nearly six months after the murder of Athens resident Sharon Wellington in her apartment, the Athens Police Department has not made an arrest in the case.

Chief Floyd Johnson said recently the trail to Wellington’s killer had gone cold and the department has no solid leads in the case.

In an effort to generate new information that could help solve the case, Gov. Robert Bentley on Thursday announced his office is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of Wellington’s killer.

“Sharon Wellington was the victim of a brutal attack, and detectives are working hard to bring her killer to justice,” Bentley said in a statement. “I’m offering this reward to encourage people to come forward with any tips that can help solve this case.”

He said that while a cash reward is being offered, the greatest reward would be justice for Wellington, her family, friends the community.

“If you know anything about what happened to Sharon back in December, I hope you’ll share that information with detectives,” Bentley said.

Jeremy King, spokesman for the governor’s office, said circumstances of the case play a role in when the state will offer a reward. In this particular case, he said, the governor’s office has been in touch with both Johnson and District Attorney Brian Jones.

“We reviewed (the information) and found that this would indeed quality for a reward,” King said. “The goal is to try to encourage anybody who may have seen or heard something that night. Even the most minor information could lead to a big break.”

The body of the 32-year-old Wellington was found in her second-floor apartment at 1410 E. Elm St. where she lived alone. An autopsy revealed she sustained multiple stab wounds to her upper body.

Members of her church, Southside Church of Christ in Rogersville, stopped by to see her after not hearing from her in a couple of days. Neighbors who lived in Elmwood Apartments previously told The News Courier there were no sounds of distress from Wellington’s apartment.

Anyone with any information on the Wellington case is urged to call the Athens Police Department at 256-233-8700.

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