By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
An East Brewton man, initially charged with reckless murder but allowed to plea to manslaughter, was one of two state inmates with local ties who were denied parole during recent hearings by the Alabama Board of Pardons & Paroles.
Earl Devoe Dickerson, 41, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for a July 2013 vehicle crash that claimed the life of 13-year-old Nicholas Robinson. The teen was riding in the bed of a pickup Dickerson drove off the road and into a utility pole while allegedly under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
He was also sentenced to 20 years on a first-degree assault charge that resulted from serious injuries to another child who was in the bed of the truck at the time of the crash, but that sentence is to be served concurrently with the manslaughter penalty.
Dickerson is currently housed at Ventress Correctional Facility. He has spent more than 8-1/2 years behind bars, including 379 days in jail while awaiting trial and transfer. His minimum release date without pardon or parole is July 22, 2033.
Parole was also denied for Roderick James Hicks, 55, whose only tie to Escambia County is a second-degree assault conviction he picked up while an inmate at Fountain Correctional Facility.
According to Alabama Department of Corrections records, Hicks had been treated lightly in the past. He served only 11 months of a 2-year sentence for drug possession in 1993 before being paroled, then served just two years, one month and 27 days after being sentenced to three life sentences (with the possibility of parole) after his 1996 conviction on three counts of first-degree robbery in Mobile County.
After the 1999 assault conviction in Escambia County, his parole was revoked, and the life sentences were reinstated. He has now spent more than 26 years in state custody, including 1,582 days in jail while awaiting trial and transfer.
Still housed at Fountain CF, Hicks will next be considered for parole in 2026.