Man guilty of capital murder in clerk's burning death - Dallas News |

Man guilty of capital murder in clerk's burning death

Posted: Updated:

Jurors have convicted a man who killed a convenience store clerk by setting her on fire.

Matthew Johnson, 38, of Garland was found guilty Wednesday of capital murder for the death of 76-year-old Nancy Harris.

Harris was working at the Fina Station on Broadway when Johnson tried to rob it in May 2012.

Surveillance video of the incident was shown in court on Monday. It shows Harris covered in flames, leaving store. She was spotted by Garland police, who put out the fire with an extinguisher.

Family members chose to leave the courtroom rather than watch the disturbing video.

Firefighters testified Harris had first, second and third degree burns on her face, shoulders, abdomen, arms and legs.

She died a few days after the attack, but was able to able to first describe the person responsible.

The firefighters said Harris told them Johnson poured lighter fluid on her head from 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.

The victim's family members hugged one another after the verdict, but said they didn't want to comment until after the punishment phase of the trial.

Johnson can be sentenced to either life in prison or death.

His defense attorney is hoping for leniency because he said his client's motive was robbery, not to kill anyone.

Powered by WorldNow

400 N. Griffin Street
Dallas, Texas 75202

Main Station Directory:
(214) 720-4444
News Fax:
(214) 720-3263 or (214) 720-3333

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices