Adrienne Simpson, alleged Tyler Terry accomplice, now charged with murder in death of York man
YORK, S.C. (WBTV) - Adrienne Simpson, the woman accused of helping murder suspect Tyler Terry in a two-state crime spree that ended with a week-long manhunt in South Carolina, is now facing another murder charge.
York Police said on Wednesday that Simpson’s charge of accessory after the fact has been upgraded to murder in the death of 35-year-old Thomas Hardin. Hardin was found dead on May 2 in his York home, and Terry was named as a suspect on May 18 as he was evading authorities.
Hardin’s friends say Hardin identified as a woman. However, his friends say he still went by the name of Thomas and did not have a preferred pronoun.
“He would say he or she. Thomas didn’t care. When I’m talking to him, sometimes I’m saying he, sometimes I’m saying she. He did not care,” Hardin’s friend, Chimere Hicks, explained.
Hicks says Hardin and Terry were at one point romantically involved but their relationship recently deteriorated.
One of Hardin’s neighbors, Fred McGowen, also said Hardin and Terry lived together briefly which led to their falling out.
York Police officers responded to Hardin’s home on Lowry Row at about 8:40 p.m. Hicks called police when she and his family had not heard from him.
“It wasn’t normal,” Hicks said.
Hicks said his car was parked outside the house, but the door he always used was locked. She said she felt like something was not right so she called police.
According to the York Police report, Hardin was found motionless on the floor between the couch and the door. The York County Coroner has not released a cause of death, but Hicks and Hardin’s neighbor, Fred McGowen, tells WBTV that Hardin was shot.
Simpson and Terry are also both charged in connection with multiple other crimes and three other murders across at least two states.
According to warrants obtained Tuesday, Adrienne Simpson admitted to investigators that she and Terry shot and killed Eugene Simpson before the pair dumped his body in a ditch on Stroud Road in Chester. The killing happened on May 2, but Eugene was only reported as missing.
By the time Eugene Simpson’s body was found, Adrienne Simpson was already behind bars following a police chase that included shots being fired at deputies, and the manhunt for Terry was on day two.
Over the course of the next five days, investigators would reveal Terry and Adrienne were also suspects in the death of 70-year-old Barbara Goodkin in St. Louis. Police say Terry and Simpson shot Goodkin and her husband, Stanley, who survived.
After Adrienne’s arrest, WBTV spoke with her mother, Carol DeWitt. She said spoke to her daughter in a brief phone call from the Chester County Jail in S.C.
“She told me to tell her kids that she loved them,” said DeWitt. “And I said, ‘Adrienne, what were you thinking?’ She told me she was manipulated.”
DeWitt said her daughter and Eugene had been separated for several years, but remained friends. She also said her daughter started dating Tyler Terry in 2018.
“It was toxic. He was abusive physically, verbally, mentally.”
DeWitt took photos of Adrienne after she says Terry was arrested for beating her.
“She told me she’s scared of Tyler. She told me that a couple of times,” said DeWitt. “I said, ‘Why do you keep going back?’ She said, ‘Mama, I love him. He might change if I just hang in there.’ I said, ‘Adrienne, it aint’ worth it.”
A little over a year ago, Chester County deputies arrested Terry for first degree domestic violence. Terry is accused of hitting Adrienne so hard, she lost hearing in her right ear and her eye was swollen shut.
DeWitt said her daughter visited her just before Mother’s Day, and mentioned that Thomas Hardin was killed and Eugene Simpson was missing.
“Did it cross your mind at all that she may be involved in any of that,” asked WBTV’s Kristi O’Connor.
“Not about Eugene, you know? I just don’t really see Adrienne murdering nobody… I really can’t,” said DeWitt.
Investigators have not reveled a possible motive for the murders of Eugene Simpson or Thomas Hardin.
While Adrienne Simpson was arrested shortly after the police chase in South Carolina, Tyler Terry would remain on the run for a week until being captured on May 24.
He appeared in court the following day, where he was denied bond on all his charges.
Copyright 2021 WBTV. All rights reserved.