FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) — A 22-year-old homeless man has been sentenced to life in prison without parole for killing his pregnant girlfriend and her unborn baby in 2012.
Johnny Calvin Scott was convicted of capital murder in the death of Vanessa Murrell, 22, and her unborn son. The death penalty was waived by prosecutors, leading to the automatic life sentence.
Murrell’s body was found in a field in east Fort Worth on Aug. 19, 2012. Her throat had been cut and signs of strangulation were found.
Scott was arrested by Fort Worth Police for unrelated crimes hours later. While at the station, a family member called him to relay news that Murrell had been found dead.
Scott began “acting hysterical” about her death, attracting the attention of a homicide detective who had just returned from the murder scene. The detective noticed bloods stains on Scott’s pants and took him to the homicide office for questioning.
Scott initially denied killing Murrell, who worked as a prostitute. He later admitted to killing her, saying she was cut with a box cutter during an argument.
Forensics evidence showed that Scott’s DNA was found under Murrell’s fingernails. Her blood was also on his pants.
“Never let it be said that the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office doesn’t represent the rights of the unborn,” said Prosecutor David Hagerman. “We tried this case both for Vanessa Murrell and Baby Murrell, and justice was served.”
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