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Teen Charged With Murdering Mother’s Air Force Fiance

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Antonio Hicks (Booking Photo)

Antonio Hicks (Booking Photo)

DETROIT (WWJ) - A 19-year-old man accused of shooting his mother and killing the Air Force officer she was engaged to marry has been officially charged in the case.

Antonio Hicks was arraigned Thursday on charges of first-degree murder, assault with intent to murder and having a firearm during a felony in connection with the death of 41-year-old staff Sgt. Johnny Clyburn.

Authorities say Hicks fatally shot Clyburn before turning the gun on his mother, 40-year-old Nicolina Pace, around 7 a.m. Tuesday at their home in the 5900 block of Woodhall Street, near Chandler Park Drive and Cadieux Road on the city’s east side.

Police say Pace, who was shot twice, was able to call 911 and identify the shooter as her son. Officers immediately responded to the area and started searching for Hicks. He was located about an hour later and three miles away, near 7 Mile Road and Mac Crary Avenue, and was taken into custody.

After he was arrested, Hicks was taken to a local hospital for a mental evaluation.

“It appears that he does suffer from some type of psychological disorder,” Sgt. Michael Woody said. “Unfortunately, I don’t want to go into diagnosing him just yet. We were told that he’s been off some medications that he normally takes, which may have contributed to the incident.”

Johnny Clyburn, identified by his mother, was shot to death by his 19-year-old stepson. (Credit: Ron Dewey/WWJ Newsradio 950)

Johnny Clyburn, identified by his mother, was shot to death by his 19-year-old stepson. (Credit: Ron Dewey/WWJ Newsradio 950)

Clyburn was a 21-year Air Force veteran and a member of the 127th Security Forces Squadron at Selfridge Air National Guard Base. He had just returned home from his overnight shift before the shooting took place.

Longtime friend Darwin Roche served in Afghanistan with Clyburn.

“He loved God, he loved his family and he loved this country,” Roche said. “There was no one or no thing that he would not give something for, that really gravitated me toward him over 20 years ago.”

Hicks is due back in 36th District Court on June 10 for a probable cause hearing.

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