“Ms. Holloway admitted she and Mr. Williams would hit Marcus on the buttocks, legs and head with a belt, plastic bat or drumsticks when he was disrespectful or would steal food. Ms. Holloway reported the night before Marcus died, Mr. Williams poured ice water over him as a form of punishment,” the state agency said. “She reported all she could recall Marcus eating the day before he died was a marshmallow pie.”
The trial judge, Stephen Friot, told jurors he respectfully disagreed with the U.S. Justice Department's decision to drop the death penalty.
The judge also told jurors that decision had to be personally approved by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.
“I am certain that no one person would have been better qualified than you, the jury in this case, to sit in judgment of Connell C. Williams and to determine the outcome of this case. In my view, in a case like this one, no decision by one person can command the moral force that your verdict would have commanded,” the judge wrote in a statement thanking them for their service “in this heart-rending case.”
Prosecutors alleged Williams lacked remorse for what he did to the boy.