Two Chattanooga cold murder cases have come to a close.
Christopher Jeffre Johnson pleaded guilty to three first-degree murder charges Monday. (Photo: Hamilton County Sheriff's Office)
On Monday morning, Christopher Jeffre Johnson pleaded guilty to the murders of brothers Sean and Donny Goetcheus and Melissa Michelle "Missy" Ward.
Hamilton County Criminal Court Judge Don Poole accepted pleas of three counts of first-degree murder and sentenced him to three separate life sentences, each without the possibility of parole.
Missy Ward, 33, was last seen Oct. 29, 2004, getting into a pickup truck outside of a Bi-Lo grocery store on East 23rd Street. Her body was found two months later on Cash Canyon Road in Lookout Valley.
In 2011, Johnson was charged with the kidnapping and rapes of two teenage girls. During interviews with Hamilton County detectives, Johnson repeatedly admitted to strangling and killing Ward the night she disappeared.
Detectives took Johnson to the area where Wards body was recovered. He identified the location where he left Ward and her belongings, which perfectly matched where Ward had been found seven years earlier.
In 2014, Johnson began serving a 50-year prison sentence for the kidnapping ...