Nashville area state prison renamed in honor of slain corrections officer Debra Johnson
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Mike Osborne) -- Gov. Bill Lee says the Tennessee Prison for Women in Bordeaux will be renamed in honor of slain corrections administrator Debra Johnson.
It was one year ago, Friday, that Johnson was murdered in her home on the grounds of the West Tennessee State Penitentiary.
Officials say the 38 year corrections department veteran was sexually assaulted, then strangled to death by prisoner trustee Curtis Watson.
Watson then escaped and led authorities on a five day manhunt. He was captured less than ten miles from the prison.
Watson faces the death penalty if convicted of murder in the case during trial now set for an October 26 start.
Department of Corrections employees on Friday paused at 8:10 a.m. to honor Johnson with a moment of silence.
Gov. Lee says the prison for women will henceforth be named the Debra K. Johnson Rehabilitation Center.