Jurors decided on Nov. 6 that prison inmate Dillion Gage Compton, 24, should be put to death for killing Officer Marianne Johnson in 2016.
The verdict comes after more than a full day of deliberation and 11 days of testimonies in the punishment phase of the trial. The trial began on Oct. 1 and jurors found Compton guilty of capital murder for Johnson’s death on Oct. 15.
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice would like to thank the Jones County jury for its hard work and service during…
On July 16, 2016, Johnson’s body was found handcuffed to a pole inside the kitchen area of the French Robertson Prison Unit. The body was undressed and surrounded by boxes.
Johnson’s throat was crushed, and she had scratches and bruising all over her body, according to findings from the medical examiner. The prosecution said there were also other signs of a struggle in the room, according to Abilene Reporter News.
Compton was found at the scene of the crime and subsequently arrested.
“The murder of Marianne Johnson is a tragedy for her family, this agency and all of those close to her,” Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) Executive Director Bryan Collier said in a Facebook post.
“This verdict cannot take away the suffering of her loss but we hope that it does provide some level of closure knowing justice has been done.”
#CRIME: Day 1 of the Jones County capital murder trial has ended. Dillion Gage Compton is charged with killing Corrections Officer Marianne Johnson while on duty at the French Robertson Unit back in July of 2016. pic.twitter.com/Jt1vzTvtkh
— Lindsey Ragas (@LindseyRagasTV) October 1, 2018
Death Penalty for Compton
Compton will be taken to a Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) inmate processing center and later transferred to death row at the Polunsky Unit in Livingston, Polk County, Director of the TDCJ Public Information Office Jeremy Desel said, according to Abilene Reporter News.
Desel said it will be years before an execution date is set for Compton.
“There’s an entire mandated, constitutional appeals process that takes place over a period of years. Once the accused chooses to wave all appeals and/or the appeals make it to their ultimate point, then a date could be set. But that, generally speaking, is six to 10 years,” Desel said.
Compton is joining more than 200 inmates on death row in Texas.
The last death penalty case in Jones County was in 1989. A 7-year-old girl, April Marie Wilson, was found dead after having been raped, choked, and bludgeoned. Gary Miller was found guilty and executed by lethal injection on Dec. 5, 2000.