Judge wants death penalty hearings over - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Judge wants death penalty hearings over


Dougherty County Judge Willie Lockette orders defense attorneys and prosecutors to file legal briefs in the next 90 days, following Friday's death penalty hearing in the 20-year old murder case against Ray Johnson.     

Johnson was given a death sentence for the March 1994 murder of Angela Sizemore.   The young mother was raped and stabbed 41 times.     

Johnson's attorneys have been re-testing evidence with new DNA technology and want a new trial.  Friday, they called a forensic scientist from Virginia Commonwealth University to testify.     

Prosecutors and Sizemore's family say the defense is just wasting time.

"Offering again the notion that there had an alternative theory to what had happened.  That there possibly could have been other persons who might have been involved.  But no evidence to substantiate it," said Greg Edwards, Dougherty D. A.         

At the end of today's hearing Johnson surprised even his lawyers by asking to speak.  He thanked Judge Lockette for allowing him to present his appeal.     

Judge Lockette told defense attorneys he wants this to be the last hearing on this murder case.



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