published Friday, November 8th, 2013

2 Tennessee teens sentenced in death of soldier

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. — A judge has sentenced two Tennessee men convicted of murder in the killing of a Fort Campbell soldier who was giving them a ride home.

The Leaf-Chronicle reports Judge John H. Gasaway sentenced Giovonne Johnson and Rakeem Jones, who are both 19, to life plus 25 years in the slaying of 22-year-old Spc. Taylor Hotzoglou.

The soldier was shot multiple times on April 28 in Clarksville, Tenn., after giving the two teenagers a ride. He was found by a passer-by dead in his car.

A jury convicted the teens in September of second-degree murder, felony murder and especially aggravated robbery in the death.

Gasaway ordered that the sentences be served consecutively. He said both men were leaders in the killing and robbery, which he described as a "cold-blooded" act without any "justification at all."

Neither teen made a statement expressing remorse before they were sentenced.

Prosecutor Robert Nash says the sentence was deserved.

"The court was absolutely correct in ordering consecutive sentences," Nash said. "The nature and circumstances were extremely egregious, violent and heinous ... A lot of things about this case made it a very ugly and nasty crime."

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