Clinton claims innocence

Convicted serial killer on witness stand in death penalty hearing; says he didn't kill Heather Jackson and her children. Click the first link to hear him plead with jury to reconsider evidence.
Jessica Cuffman
Nov 12, 2013

Click HERE to watch Curtis Clinton deny killings

Serial killer Curtis Clinton, 42, took the stand in his own defense Tuesday morning, claiming his innocence and pleading with jurors to spare his life.

For an hour and a half, he shared non-linear points about evidence he thought jurors should question, from the odds forensic scientists calculated in analyzing DNA evidence, to his disbelief that someone would believe he could rape and kill a child when he has three of his own.

Clinton took the stand to make an unsworn statement, exempting him from questioning by both his attorneys and prosecutors, leaving him unchecked to speak to jurors for 90 minutes.

The members of the three families he victimized, filling half of Erie County Common Pleas Judge Tygh Tone's courtroom, mostly remained quiet, enduring his monologue.

Security deputies, however, kept a close eye on Nick Fee, brother of murder victim Heather Jackson, 23, and uncle to her two children, Celina, 3, and Wayne Jr., 20 months.

Fee, who has stared down Clinton during every hearing since the killer was arrested, leaned forward in his seat, rested his arms on the barrier between the galley and the rest of the court, and clasped his hands as Clinton talked.

The 17-year-old Clyde girl Clinton raped the week before he killed the Jackson family also remained in the courtroom with her parents, and the family of Misty Keckler, an 18-year-old woman Clinton strangled to death in 1997, endured his sentencing hearing for the second time.

Special prosecutor Paul Scarsella, assisting Erie County prosecutor Kevin Baxter, submitted only a handful of evidence to the jury — autopsy photos of Celina and Wayne, DNA reports, and autopsy reports from the case.

Clinton's attorneys did not present opening or closing statements or call any of the witnesses to present the case they had prepared in his defense.

Clinton, they said, asked them not to.

The jury, now deliberating whether to give Clinton the death penalty, must decide whether the circumstances of the Jackson family's death outweigh all other factors that may have led to Clinton committing the murders.

In his closing statements, Scarsella submitted there were no such factors — that in Clinton's 90 minutes on the stand, he had presented nothing.

"What mitigating factors are there?" he said. "The answer to that question, truthfully, there are none."

During his time on the stand, Clinton told jurors it didn't matter what he decided, he would appeal it.

"I get to fight," he said.

Comments

Tiredofthe BS

I am glad you think you should get a chance to fight for your life cause I am sure a 3 yr old and a 20 month old did not put up much of a fight when you killed them you b@$t@rd!

OHIOHOOSIER76

"must decide whether the 'CIRCUMSTANCES' of the Jackson family's death outweigh all other factors that may have led to Clinton committing the murders"

WHAT?????

sandtown born a...

Let him plead his case from the bottom of Erie with blocks chained to his ankles. P0S

sandtown born a...

Buried in sand up to the neck while the tide slowly raises the water level comes to mind. Still better than what this monster did.

bondgirlM

Love it!

dorothy gale

What an evil, arrogant creature he is. I wish the jury could sentence him to life in general population, no protection, thereby ensuring a quick and violent death for this scum of the Earth.

muec95

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deertracker

This guy wants the death penalty which will basically ensure he will be segregated away from any real threat. He will be alive for the next 20+ years. His death won't be quick or violent! This is justice?

SaraMac

Exactly.

SaraMac

So,where are all the other p.o.s. that defended and claimed innocence of this EVIL MONSTER last year? Pretty damn quiet now,aren't they?

Joker

Ride the lightning.

Julie R.

Why has this evil monster been allowed to dress up during this trial? Shouldn't he be in prison garb? Also, considering how he had two or three years tacked on to the 1st murder he committed because he attacked a guard, one would think they would have him handcuffed & shackled.

deertracker

I wondered that too since he has been convicted!

Tiredofthe BS

They do that so not to influence the jury into believing he is a monster. He should never have gotten out of prison period. He should have NEVER been released the first time!

looking around

He obviously missed the point, he was found guilty on all counts! He spouts off that he will get a new trial and not in a "little court" let him fry!

Julie R.

Too bad they didn't give Nick Fee 5 minutes alone with that evil s.o.b.

kURTje

Laughing Satan looks at curtshit & spreads his wings.