Alabama prosecutors seeking death penalty for woman charged in strangulation death of Army vet
al.com September 12, 2023
(Tribune News Service) — Jefferson County, Ala., prosecutors will seek the death penalty for a woman charged in the 2021 slaying of a U.S. Army veteran.
Alexandria Nicole Davis, 31, is charged with capital murder in the death of 30-year-old Johnnie Will Anderson III, who was found decomposing in his Homewood apartment with a necktie and dog leash around his neck.
The Jefferson County Coroner’s Office ruled his death a homicide by strangulation.
Deputy District Attorney Jessica Hebson filed the death penalty notice on Monday. She noted that Anderson was killed in the course of a robbery which included the taking of Anderson’s car keys, car, cell phone and debit or credit cards.
Anderson, the father of a 10-year-old daughter, was found dead Friday, Sept. 10, 2021, at his home at the Park at Buckingham apartments on Aspen Circle. Authorities believe he had been dead for several days.
Davis was taken into custody Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021, at the Circle K on Lorna Road. She is also charged with attempted murder in the unrelated stabbing of another woman that happened in Birmingham on that Saturday, just hours before she was arrested in Hoover.
The lookout bulletin for the suspect in the stabbing matched the description of Anderson’s missing vehicle – a grey Dodge Charger. An officer spotted the wanted vehicle that Saturday afternoon.
Both Homewood and Birmingham police also responded to the scene, and Birmingham police placed Davis in the Birmingham City Jail pending their ongoing stabbing investigation.
Birmingham detectives then charged Davis with attempted murder and obstruction of justice, claiming she provided them with a false identity. Days later, Homewood police charged her in Anderson’s death.
Public Defenders Paul H. Rand and Sammie Shaw earlier this year asked that the capital murder charge be dismissed, saying that there’s no way to get a fair trial without such important evidence.
Jefferson County Deputy District Attorney Jessica Hebson contended in a hearing that the missing physical evidence – which also included the victim’s clothing — is still documented through crime scene photos.
“The dog leash and necktie are so critical to the defense as to make any trial without them fundamentally unfair,’’ Rand wrote in his motion.
Jefferson County Circuit Judge Alaric May in June denied the motion to dismiss the charges. May, in his ruling, said the loss of evidence is reprehensible, but was not done in bad faith.
At the time of her arrest in Anderson’s slaying, Davis had just been arrested on Aug. 30, 2021, by Hoover police on charges of possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a controlled substance.
That arrest followed Hoover police responding to a reported robbery that turned out to be a civil dispute. Used needles and meth were found during that incident, according to court records.
Prior to that arrest, Davis pleaded guilty to a 2020 theft of a Nissan from a man in Birmingham. As part of her plea, she was ordered to take part in the Deferred Theft Court Program, with the stipulation that she would have to serve 18 months in prison if she failed the program.
On Sept. 12, 2021, a judge ruled her non-compliant and issued a warrant for her arrest.
The capital murder trial is set for May 24, 2024.
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