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Alabama man accused of killing mother, injuring 2 other relatives with sword, sheriff’s office says

A man in Alabama was booked in jail Wednesday after being accused of killing his mother with a sword and injuring two other relatives in a “gruesome attack."
Published: Jan. 20, 2022 at 10:20 AM CST
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MOBILE COUNTY, Ala. (WALA/Gray News) – A man in Alabama was booked in jail Wednesday after being accused of killing his mother with a sword and injuring two other relatives in a “gruesome attack” Sunday.

Damien Winslow Washam, 23, walked with his head bowed and didn’t speak as he was taken from the hospital to jail.

Mobile County Sheriff’s Captain Paul Burch told WALA this is among the worst crimes he’s seen in his career.

“He had absolutely no remorse whatsoever,” Burch said. “Probably the most shocking part of it.”

Damien Winslow Washam, 23, walked with his head bowed and didn’t speak as he was taken from the hospital to jail.

Investigators say Washam used a “ninja-style” sword he recently had purchased to fatally stab his mother, 61-year-old Helen Nettles Washam, at their home.

He is also accused of cutting 52-year-old George Washington Nettles, his uncle who is bedridden from cerebral palsy, on the face. Authorities say he is in critical condition.

Washam allegedly cut his younger brother, Desmon Washam, on the wrist. He was treated at the scene and is expected to be OK.

According to Burch, the suspect has no criminal record or apparent history of mental illness, explaining investigators would explore the possibility that drugs may have played a role.

Burch said the sword, which has a blade measuring about 3 feet, likely was not very sharp, adding sword attacks are rare.

“I can only, maybe, think of one or two other times where there was a large sword-type weapon used, you know, in either an assault or homicide,” he said. “And this one’s even worse because the, you know, offender killed his mom, you know, with a sword.”

Washam left the scene before deputies arrived. Deputies spotted his car, but he refused to stop and led authorities on a pursuit.

Police deployed spike strips to stop Washam and found the sword used to kill his mother in the front seat of the vehicle.

Investigators say Washam used a “ninja-style” sword he recently had purchase to fatally stab...
Investigators say Washam used a “ninja-style” sword he recently had purchase to fatally stab his mother at their home.(Mobile County Sheriff's Office)

Washam tried to run away but was tased by a deputy. He was taken to the hospital to be treated for injuries before being booked in jail Wednesday.

He faces several charges, including murder, attempted murder and second-degree assault.

Authorities say there are still a lot of unanswered questions that may have triggered or led up to this crime.

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