Man faces trial over burning death of Dallas clerk - Dallas News |

Man faces trial over burning death of Dallas clerk

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The trial of a man who killed a convenience store clerk by setting her on fire began Monday in Dallas.

Matthew Johnson, 38, of Garland is accused of killing Nancy Harris, 76 by setting her on fire during a robbery in 2012.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty and showed surveillance camera video of the incident in court on Monday.

Family members of Harris had to leave the court room when prosecutors showed the video, apparently being too hard to watch for them.

Harris managed to make it outside when on fire and was spotted by Garland police, who put out the fire with a fire extinguisher.

Firefighters on Monday testified Harris had first, second and third degree burns to her face, shoulders, abdomen, arms and legs. They also said Harris told them Johnson put the lighter fluid in a Gatorade bottle, which was later found outside the store.

A Garland patrol officer testified Johnson was caught in a nearby alley and appeared sober and coherent.

Harris died a few days after the May 2012 attack, but was able to describe her attacker before dying.

The trial is expected to last nearly two weeks.

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