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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Alabama

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Woman Sentenced to More Than 18 Years in Prison for her Role in Dothan Truck Bombing Targeting a Former Boyfriend

           Montgomery, Alabama –        On Tuesday, April 12, 2022, Ashley Nicole Haydt, 36, from Taylor, Alabama, was sentenced to 220 months in federal prison for her role in instigating a Dothan truck bombing that targeted a former boyfriend and father to one of her children, announced U.S. Attorney Sandra J. Stewart. Following her prison sentence, Haydt will serve three years of supervised release. There is no parole in the federal system.

            According to court records and evidence presented at her trial, in 2017, Haydt worked at Wiregrass Rehabilitation Center in Dothan with Sylvio Joseph King. The two became friends and Haydt told King about the troubled relationship she was having with her long-time boyfriend and father of her unborn child. Haydt was distraught because her boyfriend would not agree to marry her and that he ultimately ended their relationship. In June 2017, their child was born, and the ex-boyfriend filed for custody soon after. The jury saw numerous texts from Haydt to King during this time where she villainized her ex-boyfriend and she repeatedly expressed concern over losing custody of her infant child. Haydt told King that her life would be better if the ex-boyfriend were out of the picture. Those texts continued for several weeks until Haydt suggested they begin using an alternate app called Snapchat to communicate. One of the principal features of Snapchat is that pictures and messages are usually only available for a short time before they become inaccessible to their recipients.

            With Haydt’s ongoing encouragement to eliminate her ex-boyfriend, King began to purchase materials needed to construct a pipe bomb. Haydt provided King with her ex-boyfriend’s address and, in the early morning hours of October 23, 2017, King placed the explosive device in the ex-boyfriend’s work truck that was parked at his home. King detonated the bomb while the ex-boyfriend was driving to work. Shrapnel from the device was blasted into the ex-boyfriend’s back and hip area, but thanks to the actions of a passing motorist and first responders, he survived. After the explosion, King sent Haydt a message that read, “boom, I felt that from 120 feet away.”

            Law enforcement quickly became suspicious of Haydt’s involvement in the crime. Haydt gave numerous conflicting statements during multiple interviews and, when agents checked her cell phone, they discovered she had deleted text messages she exchanged with King the day of the bombing and before. She had also deleted the Snapchat app. However, significant evidence of their prior communications remained on King’s phone. King also testified during the trial confirming Haydt’s involvement. After the four-day trial, the jury found Haydt guilty of conspiracy, malicious use of an explosive, and concealing the commission of a felony. King was sentenced on November 4, 2021, to 108 months in prison for his role in the bombing.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Houston County Sheriff’s Office, the Dothan Police Department, and the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA), with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Alabama Fire Marshal’s Office. Assistant United States Attorneys Brandon W. Bates and B. Chelsea Phillips prosecuted the case.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Updated April 13, 2022