Angelina prosecutors drop charges in 7-year-old murder case

Shelly Dorsey mug shot courtesy of Angelina County Jail.
Shelly Dorsey mug shot courtesy of Angelina County Jail.
Ryan Deaton
Ryan Deaton

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - By Holley Nees - email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - The Angelina County District Attorney's Office is dropping charges against a woman accused in the 2003 death of her ex-husband, after an examiner's office determined suicide could not be ruled out as a cause of death.

Shelly Anne Dorsey, 38, was indicted in 2008 for the shooting death of Alvin Dorsey. According to a previous report, Alvin Dorsey was found dead at Little Jim's night club on U.S. 69 South. Officers arrived to find him dead with a pistol near him.

An initial autopsy report showed the gunshot came from more than four feet away.

Dorsey's attorney, Ryan Deaton, said that examiner's office made a mistake. Another examiner's report stated the gunshot could have come from closer than four feet away and could not rule suicide out as a cause of death.

"It was a monumental mistake by the Tyler DPS lab and what happened was they issued a report that said that the victim did not have any gun powder residue on his shirt," Deaton said. "And then we had that same shirt re-tested and clearly there was gunpowder residue on the shirt."

District Judge Barry Bryan said he would accept the dropped charges, pending documentation from that examiner's office.

"She was very happy," Deaton said. "I mean, I think probably more relieved than anything and happy to be able to move on with her life and get this behind her."

But, the state says the victim's family was hoping for a different outcome.

"They're very disappointed, obviously they would've preferred to have the evidence presented to a jury, but under the circumstances, I don't see that there's a point because again it's our obligation to establish her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt and I think given the test results," prosecuting attorney Art Bauereiss said. "That's going to be impossible to do."

Deaton said the couple were in the middle of a divorce. Dorsey now lives in Iowa. Attempts to reach her were not successful.

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