Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee is grateful to law enforcement and citizens for their efforts in capturing Curtis Ray Watson

Local News

HENNING, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) – Governor Bill Lee said Monday he was grateful to local and state law enforcement and the people in the area for their efforts in capturing Curtis Ray Watson.

“I’m sure proud of the folks that came together to help us,” Lee said. 

Watson escaped from the West Tennessee State Penitentiary August 7 and was captured Sunday morning. He is accused of sexually assaulting and killing prison administrator Debra Johnson before fleeing. 

“The family of Debra Johnson has faced a difficult tragedy, and we owe it to the family that we do everything that we can and we did,” Lee said. 

The visitation for Johnson will be in Nashville Thursday from 3pm to 7pm at 15th Avenue Baptist Church. Her funeral will be Friday in Nashville at noon at Temple Church. 

Watson is scheduled to be in court Wednesday in Lauderdale County.

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