Shaun Phillip Hardy was sentenced to 30 years in prison for murder and 20 years for tampering with a corpse in connection with the death of his ex-wife Anne-Christine Johnson. (Picture: ABC13/ Sterling Funeral Home)
Shaun Phillip Hardy, 35, was sentenced to 50 years in prison on Monday for murdering Anne-Christine Johnson then tampering with her corpse in League City, Texas in December 2016.
Hardy, who reportedly had been known as a domestic abuser, confessed to the murder and ‘he said he wanted to see Anne die,’ court documents said. Prosecutors said Hardy said Johnson had a knife when he threw her to the ground ‘as hard as he could.’
As Johnson lay on the ground bleeding, she held the knife to her chest as if to stab herself – which is when Hardy kicked the knife ‘up to the hilt’ in her chest, he said.
Afterwards, as Jonson coughed and gurgled blood, Hardy put a plastic shopping bag over her head, ‘to put her out of her misery,’
according to ABC 13. Johnson was reported missing and police searched for her for three weeks before they showed up at Hardy’s home with a search warrant to retrieve cell phones.
Hardy and Johnson had both out protection orders against each other after a violent altercation. Johnson went to the emergency room for injuries she suffered during the fight, but Hardy was never charged.
Johnson later returned to hardy so she could be with her then-five-year-old son, who has autism. Janell Bogard, Johnson’s friend, said: ‘She didn’t go back to Shaun. She went back to protect her child.’
When authorities found Johnson, she was wearing Christmas pajamas and still had a plastic bag over her head. (Picture: KHOU)
A judge signed a search warrant to search Hardy’s home after a geo-tracker detected a ping from Johnson’s cellphone near the house following her disappearance.
‘That means her phone never left the area. We were able to go in and look for any cell phones in the house,’ League City Police Spokeswoman Kelley Williamson said.
According to court documents: ‘Shaun started sobbing when he saw the (police) uniform and equipment.’ Detectives noticed a strong odor coming from the garage, where the found a ‘large object’ wrapped in dark plastic, which was found to be Johnson.
Hardy reportedly told police that he tried to cover up Johnson’s murder by cleaning the area with a mop and lighting scented candles around the remains.
He will be eligible for parole on the murder charged after he serves half his 30-year-sentence. Hardy will be eligible for parole on the tampering charge after he has served one-quarter of his 20-year-sentence.