Jury selection begins in 2001 military murder case involving Andalusia suspect

Published 4:00 pm Tuesday, April 30, 2024

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Jury selection began Monday in Pensacola for the murder trial of an Andalusia man who was arrested in February 2023 for the murder of a pregnant woman 22 years ago on an overseas military base.

Shannon L. Wilkerson, 42, was arrested in February 2023 by the Northern District of Florida and charged with first-degree murder.

According to court documents, Wilkerson is accused of being responsible for the death of 19-year-old Amanda Gonzales on Nov. 3, 2001. The FBI reported that Gonzalez was four months pregnant at the time of her death.

The murder occurred at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, then a U.S. Army base in Hanau, Germany. Wilkerson and Gonzalez were both members of the Armed Forces in 2001. Wilkerson, who was 21 at the time of the crime, was discharged from the Army in 2004 and reportedly returned to Andalusia where he operated a fitness center and later was the manager of a race track in Holt, Florida.

Gonzalez was found dead on Nov. 5, 2001 in her third-floor barracks room after she failed to report for work and her cause of death was ruled a homicide by asphyxiation, according to the FBI.

Wilkerson is charged under the Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act, which gives the U.S. federal courts jurisdiction over crimes committed outside the United States by former members of the military who are no longer subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

If convicted of the first-degree murder charge, Wilkerson faces a maximum penalty of life in prison. He pleaded not guilty at a hearing in 2023, according to a court filing.

The FBI, the Air Force’s Office of Special Investigations, and the Army’s Criminal Investigative Division investigated the case.

Trial Attorney Patrick Jasperse of the Criminal Division’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney David L. Goldberg for the Northern District of Florida are prosecuting the case.