Jury convicts Memphis mom of killing daughter

Shakara Dickens, photo courtesy Shelby County Jail.
Shakara Dickens, photo courtesy Shelby County Jail.

(WMC-TV) – Shakara Dickens was convicted Friday evening of second degree murder for killing her baby daughter Lauryn.

The jury started deliberating at 11:30 Friday morning and returned its verdict just after 4:30 p.m.

"Shakara Dickens is draped in the cloth of innocence," Art Horne, Dickens' defense attorney, said during closing arguments.

Horne closed by reminding the jury that nine-month-old Lauryn Dickens' body has never been found.

"This is a missing person's case," he said. "It's still a missing person's case. It's still open."

He said the state did not prove that Shakara Dickens killed her daughter or even that Lauryn Dickens is dead.

"They're trying to deceive you with smoke and mirrors," Horne said. "They didn't do their job and now they want you to come in here and close their file for them."

But the state claims Shakara Dickens' behavior in the days following Lauryn's disappearance proves she killed the little girl and disposed of the body.

Prosecutor Reggie Henderson harped on the three different explanations she provided.

"Why lie," he asked during his closing arguments. "You lie because you know what the truth is. Because Shakara Dickens knows Lauryn isn't coming back.

"That's one reason. You know your child is dead."

He said Lauryn Dickens deserves justice.

"This is Lauryn's day in court as well as Sakara Dickens,'" he said.

Dickens is still awaiting sentencing.

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