Wagswoofs – The man charged with the murder of a woman at a hotel in Northwest D.C. on New Year’s Day appeared in court for the first time on Wednesday. During the hearing, officials shared witness statements from the night of the incident.
“I’m relieved that he was arrested, and now we can only hope for the judicial system to convict him. We need to gather all the details and ensure that anyone responsible, whether it’s not just him but someone else as well, is held accountable and justice is served,” expressed Tiffany Falden, Hinds’ mother, during the interview.
According to court records, Hinds and a few others stayed at the hotel with the intention of attending a party in Upper Marlboro, Md. However, they ultimately decided against going due to the late hour.
Witnesses stated in a court affidavit that Cousin, who went by the name “Tall,” joined Hinds’ group after meeting with another member beforehand. Several witnesses mentioned that Cousin was consuming alcohol and repeatedly displaying his firearm. Later, he got into a heated argument with an intoxicated individual at the event after making unwanted advances towards them.
Hinds returned home for winter break after beginning her college journey at Louisiana State University. Prior to this, she completed her high school education at Dr. Henry A. Wise Jr. High School in Prince George’s County. Her mother proudly shared that Hinds was an active member of the National Honors Society, served as the student body president, and consistently achieved academic excellence by making it onto the honor roll.
According to Falden, the student was always eager to assist her friends and mentor, never encountering any issues in school. She would share stories about her days, occasionally feeling homesick, but overall, she was adjusting well, making new friends, and excelling academically.
During his visit back home in Louisiana, Hinds made plans to join his friends for a hotel party on New Year’s Eve.
Falden revealed that she had a conversation with her daughter just before midnight on Monday. Little did she realize that it would be the final opportunity for her to hear her daughter’s voice.
“I spoke to Ashlei at 11:55, to be precise, and we talked until close to midnight. During our conversation, we expressed our love for each other. I reminded her to stay safe and have a good time, never imagining that any problems would arise,” Falden shared. “Just an hour later, I received an utterly devastating phone call.”
Cousin was captured on video walking out of the hotel wearing a ski mask, according to an officer who later reviewed the footage. Eventually, on January 2nd, Cousin surrendered himself to the authorities.
Falden and her family attended Cousin’s first court appearance on Wednesday. Cousin’s next court date is scheduled for January 16th.
Falden expressed gratitude for the support she has received, emphasizing how it has helped her navigate through the immense grief she is experiencing. She is determined to honor her daughter’s memory and will persevere in her efforts to keep it alive.
“I was unaware of the extent of the love and connections she had with so many people. She maintained regular contact and conversations with numerous individuals. It is the overwhelming love and support from everyone that is helping me get through this difficult time,” Falden expressed. “I promise that her name will always be remembered and heard.”