Waco (FOX44) – A 19th District Court Jury has assessed a life sentence for David Earl Johnson after earlier finding him guilty of murder in the February 2020 death of his own cousin, 58-year-old Michael Washington.

Waco police had charged Johnson with beating his cousin in the head with a sledgehammer during an argument at the victim’s home in the 1200 block of East Calhoun Street.

Johnson was arrested a few hours after Washington’s death and had remained in the McLennan County Jail since that time.

Because of his previous felony convictions, Johnson will have to serve a minimum of thirty years before becoming eligible for parole or other release.

Johnson had been staying with the victim at his home for a time prior to the argument and attack.