BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - According to family members, the pregnant woman who was fatally shot Tuesday was just moments away from checking into a battered women's shelter when she was gunned down.
Friends and family of Shylah Hicks say she just waited too long to seek the help she desperately needed. It appears Hicks was a classic victim of domestic violence.
The day before her murder, police were called to an incident between Hicks and her boyfriend Adam Sterling; the man who is accused of killing Hicks and her unborn child. Hicks' friend, Kimberly Carter, says she let Hicks say with her in the past to hide from Sterling.
Family members say she would leave, but eventually would return to a man they say abused her. Carter says Tuesday she and Hicks were headed to a domestic violence shelter. Police say Sterling showed up first.
Carter says she tried to get Hicks to go numerous times, but she never went. Carter said this time she was going to go.
Sterling denies the charges, saying he loved Hicks. Domestic experts say one in four women have experienced domestic violence.
Louisiana leads the nation in domestic homicides, and has since 1997.