UPDATE: 2:45 p.m.
Convicted killer Steven Lawayne Nelson caused multiple problems in the Tarrant County Jail while awaiting trial, threatening a jailer, breaking light bulbs and flooding his cell by breaking the sprinkler heads, jailers told jurors Monday in the punishment phase of his capital murder trial.
Jailer Paul O'Banion testified that Nelson became agitated during a visitation with an unknown person and broke the telephone in the visitation room. When O'Banion and others moved in, he said told O'Banion he would "take your punk a** out."
Eventually he was subdued.
Nelson was convicted Monday of capital murder by a jury in state District Judge Mike Thomas' court. He is facing the death penalty or life in prison without parole. He is also suspected in the hanging death of a mentally ill inmate in the jail but he has not been formally charged.
UPDATE: 1:50 p.m.
Defense attorney Bill Ray challenged a juvenile services psychologist's claim that convicted killer Steven Lawayne Nelson had strong "family support."
During questioning of Mary Kelleher, Ray pointed out that Nelson set fires in his mother's home, including setting his mother's bed on fire when he was 3 years old. He also entered the juvenile justice system in Oklahoma when he was 6 years old and had committed several felonies by the time he was 13 years old.
Nelson's father was in prison for most of Nelson's young life and had little contact with him, Ray suggested during questioning.
Testimony is continuing in the punishment phase of Nelson's trial. He was convicted Monday of capital murder in the brutal suffocation death of pastor Clint Dobson, 28, of NorthPointe Baptist Church. Church secretary Judy Elliott was severely beaten and left for dead but survived.
UPDATE: 1:30 p.m.
Convicted killer Steven Lawayne Nelson's troubles with the law go back to 2000 when he was 13 years old, a juvenile services supervisor told jurors Monday as the punishment phase of Nelson's capital murder trial began.
Mary Kelleher, a psychologist and supervisor, said she asked Nelson why he was getting into trouble for burglary, car theft, trespassing, aggravated assault and running away.
"He was bored," she said.
Nelson, 25, was convicted Monday of capital murder in the brutal suffocation death of Clint Dobson, 28, pastor of NorthPointe Baptist Church in north Arlington. Prosecutors Bob Gill and Page Simpson are seeking the death penalty.
Defense attorneys Bill Ray and Steve Gordon will present evidence in hopes of convincing the jury to hand him a life sentence without parole, the only other option.
Testimony is expected to continue for several days before state District Judge Mike Thomas.
A jury convicted Steven Lawayne Nelson of capital murder in the brutal suffocation death of Arlington pastor Clint Dobson during a 2011 robbery of the church.
The jury in state District Judge Mike Thomas' court deliberated just over an hour before convicting Nelson, 25. Full story: www.star-telegram.com
Prosecutors Bob Gill and Page Simpson will begin presenting evidence during the punishment phase of the trial in their quest for the death penalty against Nelson.
Dobson was beaten, bound and suffocated with a plastic bag over his head on March 3, 2011 at the NorthPointe Baptist Church in Arlington. Church secretary Judy Elliott was severely beaten and left for dead but survived.
Nelson testified in his own defense, saying two friends of his actually committed the murder while he waited outside.
The punishment phase of the trial is expected to last several days, and could include testimony about the hanging death of a mentally ill inmate in the Tarrant County Jail. Nelson is suspected in that death but has not been formally charged.
UPDATE: 10:30 a.m.
The jury has asked to see cellphone records and a white belt linked to the crime scene while deliberating in the capital murder trial of Steven Lawayne Nelson.
Jurors had been deliberating only about 30 minutes when they made the request to see the evidence. They also asked for Nelson's Air Jordan shoes that contained DNA of the victims and photos of slain pastor with the bags over his head.
Investigators said Nelson was wearing the white belt when he was arrested. Several small metal studs that appeared to have fallen from the belt were found at the crime scene. Jurors also asked to see the studs from the crime scene.
The jury has begun deliberating in the capital murder trial of Steven Lawayne Nelson, a self-described "monster" accused in the brutal suffocation death of an Arlington pastor and the bludgeoning of the church secretary.
The jury went out at 10 a.m. after hearing closing arguments.
Prosecutors Bob Gill and Page Simpson urged jurors to convict Nelson of capital murder. If convicted, he would face the death penalty.
"He's a predator. He's a killer. And he's guilty," Gill told jurors during closing arguments. "The devil's in the details, but in this case, the devil forgot the details.'
Defense attorneys Bill Ray and Steve Gordon urged jurors to consider a more lenient aggravated assault charge, saying Nelson's two friends went inside the church and committed the crimes.
"You don't have to like the defendant, but he said nothing that was inconsistent with anything the prosecution said," Ray said.
The jury heard five days of testimony before state District Judge Mike Thomas.