Jury Finds Clifton Williams Guilty Of Capital Murder - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Jury Finds Clifton Williams Guilty Of Capital Murder

The first phase of a capital murder trial in Tyler is over. This afternoon, a Smith County jury found Clifton Lamar Williams, 23, guilty of capital murder.   Williams killed Cecilia Schneider, 93, in July of last year.

He stabbed, robbed, then set Schneider's body on fire. It took jurors about an hour and a half to reach their verdict after a trial that lasted nine days.

The prosecution and defense began presenting closing arguments at 11:00 a.m.  Prosecutors described to jurors what happened to Schneider during the last minutes of her life. "He stabbed her in the shoulder and he cut her arm trying to defend herself and he stabbed her in the heart twice. And he put the blankets and the napkins on her and tried to set her on fire," said Smith County First Assistant District Attorney April Sykes.

"Your own expert says there's no evidence there of DNA. There's no evidence there of blood," said defense attorney Melvin Thompson.   "There's no evidence there of Mrs. Schneider's blood. We've got mixed DNA. The punishment phase of the trial is set to get underway tomorrow morning beginning at 9:00 a.m. The court expects to take between five and six days to present their evidence.

Oralia Ortega, Reporting.  ortega@kltv.com


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