Prosecutors seek death penalty for Tennessee prison escapee indicted for murder, rape of TDOC administrator

Tennessee

RIPLEY, Tenn. (AP) — State prosecutors will be seeking the death penalty in the trial of a Tennessee convict charged with killing a corrections administrator and escaping prison on a tractor.

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Lauderdale County district attorney Mark Davidson said Tuesday that he has filed a notice of intent to seek death if Curtis Ray Watson is convicted of first-degree murder in the slaying of longtime Tennessee Department of Correction administrator Debra Johnson.

Watson has been indicted on 15 counts including premeditated murder and rape. He hasn’t entered a plea in the case.

Judge Joe Walker set an Oct. 26 trial date.

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