Jury selection to begin in Columbia toddler's abuse death

Tuesday, December 1, 2009 | 10:53 a.m. CST; updated 7:35 a.m. CST, Wednesday, December 2, 2009

COLUMBIA — Jury selection begins today in the Kansas City area in the murder trial of a Boone County man charged with killing his 2-year-old son.

A Clay County jury will be brought to Columbia for the second-degree murder trial of 27-year-old Horace Johnson. An autopsy found that toddler Cortez Johnson had more than 200 burns, cuts and bruises when he was taken to a hospital the day he died in June 2008.

Keyonda Lumpkin, the boy's mother, was found guilty of second-degree murder and sentenced in September to 24 years in prison.

Johnson fled Columbia for East St. Louis, Ill., after taking Cortez to the hospital the night he died. Federal marshals subsequently arrested him on a parole violation before the murder charges were filed.


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