On Thursday, a jury of nine men and five women (that number includes the two women alternates) began hearing testimony in the capital murder case against Albert Johnson at the Oklahoma County courthouse.
Johnson, 49, is accused of raping and beating his live-in girlfriend and a friend of hers named Rachel Rogers. Rogers,24, died from her injuries. He faces one count of first-degree murder and 10 other felony counts including, rape, assault and battery and kidnapping.
Johnson’s legal team told the jury Johnson is pleading guilty by reason of insanity on the first two counts, the murder and assault and battery with intent to kill charges associated with Rogers' death, and not guilty to all the other charges.
Prosecutors told the jury during opening statements that Rogers’ face had been completely crushed after Johnson used several items to beat the two women, including a weight, a ball, and a frying pan. The brutal attack happened back on June 13, 2014 at his girlfriend's home in The Village. Prosecutors stated Johnson, a convicted felon out on supervised release, got mad at his girlfriend for something she said to his probation officer during one of his visits. They state Johnson then threatened to kill both of his girlfriend and her young daughter if she didn't call over some of her friends so that he could have his way with them.
One of those who responded to the girlfriend's call was Rachel Rogers, who prosecutors called "Rachel the Hero" who wanted to come over to help her troubled friend. And when she did, prosecutors state Johnson told the women he was going to rape them. Prosecutors contend because Johnson felt he was going to go back to prison, he felt he had nothing to lose and proceeded to brutally attack both women, all while his girlfriend's 8-year-old daughter was asleep in a back room.
Prosecutors state he tied up his girlfriend and shoved her in the closet, after she pleaded for him to spare her life for the sake of her daughter since she was a single mother. Rogers also begged him to stop beating them. Prosecutors state after the attack, Johnson left, and that's when the girlfriend began yelling for help and yelling for her daughter, who finally woke up and helped untie her mother and they called for help. They also tried to help Rogers who was still alive, but she later died at the hospital.
The defense team does not dispute any of the allegations against Johnson but said he has mental issues that make him snap, and that he grew up with a pattern of alcohol abuse and abandonment.
Right now, the jury is hearing testimony from Johnson's federal probation supervisor.
The jury is also expected to hear testimony from another friend who was also called the night of the attack, and came over, but who did not come into the home.
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