COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) — For the first time since 2003, a Franklin County jury has recommended death for a convicted killer. The same jury that convicted Kristofer Garrett said he deserved to die for killing Nicole Duckson and their four year-old daughter Christina in January 2018.
The jury split on the first count of the indictment, sentencing Garrett to life in prison without parole. But on they ruled for the death penalty on two other counts.
Outside of the courtroom, family of both the victims and Garrett were emotional. Garrett’s aunt, Samantha Loveless, who testified at the mitigation hearing, hoping to convince the jury to spare his life, was dismayed.
“I don’t feel like its fair,” she said. “He experienced a lot of trauma and abuse that led up to this. It wasn’t like he just woke up one day and decided to do something to them.”
Garrett stabbed Duckson to death outside her home and then chased down his daughter and did the same to her.
Loveless called the situation tragic.
“Everybody’s a victim here,” she said. “Nobody wins, everybody loses.”
Clifton Duckson, the father and grandfather of the victims echoed those comments.
“Justice was served, but nobody wins today,” he said. “The young fellow is only 26 years old. He loses his life and I’ve lost two people.”
The jury’s recommendation is just that: a recommendation. It will be up to the judge to decide whether to follow that recommendation and sentence Garrett to death. A status conference will be held next week. At that time the judge will schedule a sentencing hearing where family of victims can give impact statements.