Jury finds Thomas Michael Dixon guilty on 2 capital murder counts
LUBBOCK, TX - Amarillo doctor Thomas Michael Dixon is found guilty of two counts of capital murder. He is sentenced to life in prison without parole.
The unanimous verdict was reached at around 3:20 p.m. Wednesday.
In July 2012, Lubbock pathologist Joseph Sonnier was found dead in his home. David Shepard accepted a plea deal for Sonnier's murder in 2013 and is currently serving a life in prison sentence.
It was later found the two doctors knew each other through Dixon's ex-girlfriend, Richelle Shetina. Shortly after the two ended their relationship, Shetina began to date Sonnier. Dixon paid Shepard to kill the doctor out of jealousy.
Evidence was brought forth that connected Dixon and Shepard together during both trials, including the payment Dixon made to Shepard for the murder. It was also revealed that Dixon asked Shepard to spy on Sonnier at his Lubbock home using hidden cameras.
Sonnier's three sons all gave their own victim's witness statements to the court and to Dixon after the verdict was reached.
Dallas, the oldest son, spent more than three years writing his statement, and said he was glad to finally be able to speak out.
Here are two excerpts from his three page statement, directed at Dixon:
"Dr. Dixon. You have no one to blame but yourself. You were manipulating David Shepard from day one, and you were clearly in charge of your defense strategy by how often you could be seen giving direction to your attorneys... You wanted to be right. You wanted to win. Impossible... Doctor, you're no Joe Sonnier."
"And like all Heels, you must be given a nickname that sticks with you for the rest of your life. Dr. Death was already taken. In fact, now that you are guilty of a felony, you are no longer a doctor. So that's out. But I think we'll take a cue from your attorney's terrific Freudian slip during his opening statement from the first trial. And on that note, I hereby decree until the end of time, in all of the lands throughout Texas and these great United States of America, in all the newspapers and all over Twitter, you will forever and ever be known only by the name --- Mike Guilty."