From Staff Reports
CUMBERLAND — Former Frostburg State University student Shanee Lynnette Liggins pleaded guilty to second-degree murder Monday in connection with the November 2011 stabbing death of FSU student Kortneigh McCoy outside a Frostburg off-campus residence.
Liggins entered the plea in Allegany County Circuit Court before Judge W. Timothy Finan as part of a plea agreement in which the state dismissed all other charges in the case, according to State’s Attorney Michael Twigg.
Twigg recommended a sentence of 14 years of actual incarceration as part of the agreement. Conviction of second-degree murder carries a maximum prison term of 30 years and the sentencing guidelines are for a sentence of 10 to 20 years.
Finan ordered a presentencing investigation. Sentencing is expected to take place in six to eight weeks.
At her request to address the victim’s family, granted by the judge without objection from the state, Liggins turned to the victim’s family and friends in the courtroom and said, “I am very sorry for what happened. If I could take back that day I would do that.”
The plea was accepted by the court where a several-day jury trial for Liggins was scheduled to begin Tuesday.
Liggins, of Waldorf, was 23 at the time of the incident and was enrolled at FSU as a senior business major.
McCoy, 19, of Baltimore, died of multiple stab wounds after being taken to the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center. Frostburg Police found her lying on the ground outside a Maple Street residence at about 1:30 a.m. Nov. 6, 2011.
McCoy, who was studying engineering at FSU, suffered fatal injuries when she became involved in an altercation with Liggins. The two women reportedly argued inside the residence before the fight took place outside.
Liggins was arrested immediately after the incident following investigation by Frostburg Police and the C3I Unit. She was jailed from Nov. 6 until Dec. 20, 2011, when she posted $350,000 bond for a pretrial release.
Liggins was ordered to monitored home confinement at her family residence in Waldorf pending sentencing.
The fatal stabbing occurred a short distance from the East College Avenue location where FSU student Brandon Carroll, 21, was shot and killed April 18, 2010.
FSU student Ellis Hartridge was wounded in the incident and survived.
The shooting led to the conviction of former FSU student Tyrone Hall, who pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the shotgun slaying. Hall was sentenced in circuit court to five years in prison in that incident.
Twigg prosecuted the Liggins case. Liggins was represented by Baltimore attorney John Cox, who was present at Monday’s hearing, and attorney Richard Winelander.