One of the most memorable quotes in the movie “Men in Black” is when Tommy
Lee Jones’ character Agent K exclaimed, “ A person is smart. People are dumb,
panicky, dangerous animals, and you know it!” A group of people will do acts that the individuals within it usually wouldn’t do it if were just them. This is what happened on July 27, 1997. Four friends got together to give her beating, but it quickly escalated to a more severe encounter that resulted in the death of Stacey Hanna.
When Stacey Hanna came to Richmond, Virginia to help a friend move, she decided to stay. She eventually moved into the townhouse in South Belmont
Avenue with Kelley Ann Tibbs and Dana Vaughn. Stacey started having romantic feelings for Kelley Ann. This was complicated due to Kelley Ann already being in a relationship with Tracy Bitner, her on-and-off girlfriend, who alongside Domica Winckler and Stephanie Cull were always coming over and hanging out.
Not even three weeks after moving in, tensions started rising. The other roommate Dana later will say, “Stacey was kind of obsessed.” It is speculated that Stacey Hanna and Kelley Ann Tibbs had a sexual encounter, but that was not confirmed. However, Stacey told Kelley Ann that her girlfriend Tracy was seeing someone else. When Kelley Ann confronted Tracy, it was realized that Stacey was not being truthful. Instead of asking Stacey to move out or just talking to her about it, Kelley Ann, Tracy, and their friends Domica and Stephanie decided to take Stacey out somewhere for some “ass kicking.”
On July 27, 1997, Kelley Ann Tibbs, Tracy Bitner, Domica Winckler, and Stephanie Cull invited Stacy to go out with them drinking beers. They drove to a popular drinking spot near Chesterfield airport. When they all got out of the
car, the four shouted,” One, two, three, I love you,” and started to severely beat
Hanna. Out of nowhere, Domica took a cinder block and threw it at Hanna and it fractured her skull. Domica would later tell Detective Rick Mormando, “There are times when people need to die, and this is one of those times,” They would then take a box cutter that Hanna had shoplifted earlier to start taking turns slashing her while she was on the ground.
While she laid bloody and injured, the four women would start talking about what to do with Stacey, who they had placed in the trunk of the car. They decided to kill her instead of taking her to the hospital because they were afraid of getting into trouble. They drove and stopped once so Domica Winckler could stab Hanna because she was getting too loud. When they arrived at a trail, the four spat at Stacey, and Domica stole her watch.
Stephanie Cull went back itno the car while Domica, Kelley Ann, and Tracey
Bitner then got back into the car as the other three dragged Hanna over to a puddle of mud where they ripped her T-shirt and shorts from her, leaving her in just her underwear. As Hanna lay semi-naked in the mud, she was stabbed and slashed at least 65 times with the box cutter. Two wounds ran 14 inches from her shoulder to her buttocks. At one point during the attack, Hanna said that she wanted to call her mother and tell her that she loved her; the gang denied her this last wish. Bitner then cut Hanna’s throat. The injury opened her windpipe but didn’t cut a major blood vessel. They then left Hanna face down in the murky water, bleeding profusely from the abundance of wounds she had sustained in the brutal attack. Ultimately, her cause of death was a combination of blood loss and drowning.