Juror sees trial to the end

One of the 12 jurors in the Curtis Clinton trial attended Thursday’s sentencing, saying he wanted to see the case through to the end.
Jessica Cuffman
Nov 15, 2013

 

“I can’t put my name on something and not see it through,” said Chris Williams, a freelance photographer.

Williams and his fellow jurors found Clinton guilty of murder in the deaths of Heather Jackson and her two children, as well as a slew of other crimes related to the case. They also recommended the judge sentence Clinton to death.

And that’s precisely what Erie County Common Pleas Court Judge Tygh Tone did on Thursday, sending Clinton to death row.

See a complete list of the Triple Homicide coverage HERE

Williams said that when the jury was seated about three weeks ago, he was excited to be part of the process.

By then end, however, he couldn’t erase from his mind the horrific images and horrific testimony prosecutors presented as they examined the brutal deaths of Jackson, 23, her daughter Celina, 3, and her son Wayne Jr., 20 months.

It was no simple task handing down the guilty verdict on all the criminal charges Clinton faced, including three counts of murder and three counts of rape, Williams said.

It was also difficult to recommend the judge hand down the death penalty, he said.

“It’s a lot more complicated than it looks,” Williams said. “We discussed, argued, deliberated. It was a range of emotions.

“There were people who didn’t want to give the death penalty, no matter what,” he said.

But after three hours of discussing the evidence, and applying the law as required, all 12 jurors reached an agreement.

“By the letter of the law, we had to,” Williams said.