Mary Watkins


By Beth Lawrence

A Jackson County woman rang in the New Year behind bars following a shooting in the Barkers Creek Community last month.

Mary Regina Watkins, 46, of Whittier was arrested for simple assault following an altercation on Dec. 30. She was later charged with assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury as a result of Jackson County Sheriff’s Office’s investigation into the incident, said Major Shannon Queen.

Deputies were called to a home on Grindstone Knob Road about a domestic disturbance.

“The female caller had phoned 911 while she was screaming very loudly and was not making sense to the dispatchers,” Queen said. 

The responding deputy found Ricky Carl Brooks, 56, standing in the driveway injured. Brooks sustained a gunshot wound to his left arm near the elbow. Brooks was taken by Harris EMS to Harris Regional Hospital, where he was treated and released.

“Deputies arrested the female and initially charged her with simple assault,” Queen said. “Following further investigation into the incident, deputies charged the female with assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury.”

The alleged shooting was the result of an argument between the two.

Watkins was uncooperative and did not tell authorities why she shot Brooks, Queen said.

The home on Grindstone Knob Road is Brooks’ residence, but Watkins had recently been living with Brooks, Queen said.

She was held in the Jackson County jail under a $16,000 secured bond.

She has a record dating to 2003.

Watkins was arrested for misdemeanor larceny and obtaining property by false pretenses in 2018 and for failure to appear for misdemeanor larceny, obtain property by false pretense charges in 2019.

In 2003 Watkins received probation for passing worthless checks, driving while license revoked and possession of drug paraphernalia. In 2017, she received a suspended sentence for possession of a schedule VI controlled substance. In 2018, she received probation for misdemeanor larceny.