Collier seeks death penalty for alleged murderer

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 29, 2005

If John David Anderson is found guilty of murder, he could well be one of the youngest people on death row in Ohio.

Lawrence County Prosecutor J.B. Collier Jr. said today he will seek the death penalty against John David Anderson, the 19-year-old Carter County, Ky., resident charged in connection with the death last week of Deering resident Arthur Boyer.

Boyer was found dead at his burned home Thursday. Authorities contend Anderson came to rob the elderly man, then killed him and set the house on fire to cover up his crimes.

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"We feel this is a legitimate basis and we're asking the jury to consider it a capital crime," Collier said. "We have considered what is involved, aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery and then the aggravated arson."

Collier said a special grand jury will be convened Aug. 12 to consider the case.

Officers were called to Boyer's house at 2730 County Road 55 to investigate a fire but it became a murder investigation when they found his remains inside. Authorities also discovered Boyer's vehicle was missing.

Anderson was arrested hours later in Carter County, Ky., and allegedly confessed to setting the house on fire.

Anderson remains in the Carter County Jail. He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing in Carter County District Court Monday and will be served with the Ohio warrants.