No bond for DeKalb man charged with killing pregnant girlfriend

Bond was denied Thursday for a DeKalb County man charged with shooting and killing his pregnant girlfriend last month.

Prosecutors said Carlos Jerome Simpson habitually abused women and would try to persuade the family of Shikira Dunson not to pursue the case if released.

“Mr. Simpson is likely to intimidate this family into trying to get the State to dismiss the charges,” assistant DeKalb County District Attorney Pat Jackson told the judge.

Simpson, 23, allegedly shot Dunson in the face outside his home on Feb. 18. Dunson, who court officials said was five months pregnant and the mother of Simpson’s 10-month-old, was staying with his family.

Simpson is charged with murder and aggravated assault for the 20-year-old’s death.

Public defender Darryl Queen echoed Simpson’s family, who said the fatal shooting was an accident that happened while Dunson and Simpson were goofing around near his car in the driveway of the house.

“The defendant makes a poor decision and reaches underneath the seat and grabs a handgun,” Queen said.

He acknowledged that Simpson’s family tried to cover for him.

“His sisters first told police it was a drive-by,” Queen said.

But Jackson said that even the assertion of an accidental shooting was misleading, painting a completely different picture.

“They were having an argument about her going back to her mother’s house,” she said. “She was participating in that domestic violence cycle we’re all aware of.”

Witnesses told police that Dunson went to the car, and Simpson got into the driver’s side to keep her from leaving, Jackson said.

That’s when she said Simpson pulled the handgun on Dunson.

“She said, ‘If you’re going to shoot me, shoot me,’ ” Jackson said. ” ‘Or else, I’m leaving.’ ”

And the gun went off, she said.

According to court records, Simpson has been arrested on three separate misdemeanor battery charges dating back to 2009.

In one of those cases, Jackson pointed out that Simpson was arrested in January 2009 for pistol-whipping a girlfriend.

He was released on $10,000 bond, jail records show, and “intimidated her to the point that she dropped the charges,” Jackson said.

In another case, she said Simpson shot at a girlfriend.

Again, he avoided responsibility for his actions, the prosecutor said.

“She got away,” Jackson said.

He was also arrested in 2010 on armed robbery charges.

Jackson said a recorded jail phone conversation captured Simpson and his sister Lawana Simpson talking with Duson’s mother.

“He told her he loved Shikira and would never hurt her,” Jackson said.

But when Dunson’s mother left the conversation, the recording captured Simpson discussing with his sister what to tell the victim’s family to say to get prosecutors to drop charges, Jackson said.

“He has no conscience, and this is what he does,” she said. “He is a danger … and has to be held accountable for his actions.”

DeKalb County Superior Court Judge Courtney L. Johnson agreed and denied bond for Simpson.