A Nashville man’s girlfriend testified Wednesday (Aug. 20) he shot at homicide victim Jackie Warpoole early Dec. 15, 2013 as they were driving 80 mph in an interstate road-rage incident. But she claimed she didn’t know he’d been killed.
Warpoole was found dead in his Dodge Magnum that morning at a Smyrna I-24 exit ramp with a bullet wound through his head, according to General Sessions Court testimony.
Edgar Dominique “Dom” Covington, 23, is charged with the first-degree murder and unlawful possession of a weapon in commission of a felony in connection with the shooting death. A charge of reckless endangerment was dismissed. He is being held in the county jail without bond.
General Sessions Judge David Loughry found probable cause to bind Covington’s case over to the grand jury.
It took investigators six months to make an arrest in the case after Warpoole, 47, of Smyrna, was killed. Both families declined to comment after today’s hearing.
Covington’s girlfriend, Dawn Canady, 24, of Pearl Knob Court in Murfreesboro, testified that she and Covington were leaving Murfreesboro early that morning for Antioch when a car came up fast behind them as they got onto the ramp off state Route 840 to I-24.
The Dodge Magnum swerved behind them, flashing its lights and trying to pass, she said. Canady said she show slowed down on the ramp, and when they merged onto I-24, the man driving the Dodge pulled up beside them.
“He was pretty angry and was telling us to pull over,” she said.
As both vehicles continued up I-24, Covington got a gun out from under the seat and started fumbling with bullets as he loaded it. Canady said she told him just to show the weapon to get the man to stop.
But as they approached the Sam Ridley Parkway exit in Smyrna, the man flicked a cigarette butt toward them and flipped them a bird, she said. Almost simultaneously, Canady testified, Covington put the gun out the window and fired three shots. They were going about 80 mph at the time, according to testimony.
“When I looked in the rear-view mirror, he put on his hazards and pulled on the side of the interstate,” she said of the Dodge Magnum.
Canady told defense attorney Anton Jackson in cross-examination she sped up to about 100 mph and drove home after the shots were fired. Canady testified she didn’t know Warpoole had been hit by the bullets when it happened, and she didn’t find out until May when a man who bought the gun from Covington told them it had been used in a homicide.
Canady testified that she and Covington fabricated stories about buying and selling the gun.
Rutherford County Sheriff’s Detective Jamin Humphress testified his investigation linked Covington to the shooting death after they found the weapon, a .40-caliber Smith & Wesson pistol.
Humphress said Warpoole was found dead in the passenger seat of the Dodge Magnum early that morning with a gunshot wound to the head. He was slumped over at the wheel, the car still in drive and running, with his foot on the brake.
The right rear window had a bullet defect, but the vehicle had no other damage, Humphress said. Two shell casings were found at the scene that were later matched to the murder weapon, he testified.
After detectives found the gun, the man who had it told them he bought it from Covington, Humphress testified.
When detectives questioned Covington about the weapon, at first he denied ever having it and was nervous and stuttering, Humphress said. Later, Covington admitted to having it and then selling it, the detective testified.
In one interview of Covington, Canady was present but said very little, according to Humphress. Later asked by Assistant District Attorney Paul Newman why she didn’t talk at first, Canady admitted that she was afraid of Covington because previously he had physically harmed her.
Testimony showed that Canady is charged with attempted murder, along with a friend, Anita Nichols, in connection with a Murfreesboro incident, in addition to conspiracy to commit aggravated assault, employing a firearm during commission of a felony and reckless endangerment with a weapon.
Canady and Covington had been at Nichols’ home before Warpoole was killed Dec. 15, according to testimony.
Canady made her statement to investigators implicating Covington in the murder after she was arrested in June on the attempted murder charge.