Clayton Jackson, 30, will soon find out his fate, pending a Clay County jury rendering a sentence.
Jackson was found guilty in the murders of Michael Sturgill, 4, Robert Sturgill, 3, and Jordan Sturgill, 18 months, at their Leslie County home in 2004.
The jury did not convict him in the deaths of the children’s’ parents, Chris and Amanda Sturgill, who were shot with arrows before fire was set to their Roark mobile home.
The fire was the cause of death for the Sturgill’s three young children, who all died of smoke inhalation.
Jurors heard witness testimony from Jackson’s defense attorney and the Commonwealth attorney Thursday.
Linda Roark, mother of Christ Sturgill, testified at the hearing.
Commonwealth’s Attorney Gary Gregory asked about her deceased grandchildren.
Roark described them as outgoing, who loved being outdoors. She told jurors that Michael and Robert could talk, but the youngest of the three could not.
When asked how her life had changed since the murder, Sturgill’s mother lost her composure on the stand.
“It changes you. Any mother or grandmother here can tell you… There’s nothing like your children or grandchildren. Chris was my first-born. Michael was my first grandchild. They’re all special to you,” said Roark.
Jurors could also be heard, crying.
The aunt of the defendant testified on his behalf.
Rita Jackson, who is married to Clayton Jackson’s uncle, Gary, asked for leniency from the jury.
Jackson’s daughter, Jessica, was at one time married to Clayton, and together they had a daughter, Rita testified. She asked the jury to give her granddaughter the opportunity to be able to see her father, and not sentence Jackson to death.
After nearly 17 hours of deliberation, a Clay County jury has found Clayton Jackson guilty on three counts of murder.
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