La. man sentenced to life in prison in connection with killing of soldier

La. man sentenced to life in prison in connection with killing of soldier
Tobias Williams was found guilty of second-degree murder in the 2016 shooting death of Fort Polk Capt. Jonathan Ellis. (Source: Vernon Parish Sheriff's Office)

LEESVILLE, LA (KALB / KPLC) - Tobias Williams will spend the rest of his life behind bars in connection to the 2016 death of Fort Polk Capt. Jonathan Ellis.

On Tuesday, Williams was sentenced to life in prison for second-degree murder and 40 years for obstruction of justice for his role in the shooting death of Ellis.

Last month, a jury unanimously found Williams guilty of both charges. The shooter, Wanda Gordon, is serving 40 years for manslaughter after taking a guilty plea last year. William’s then-girlfriend Dominischa Smith was in court Tuesday for a bond reduction hearing. Smith was arrested shortly after William’s trial for perjury.

Testimony revealed that Gordon shot Ellis in the back of the head on the night of Sept. 19, 2016. Williams admitted to burning the body for about three days. Investigators would later find the charred bone fragments of Ellis in a burn pile on William’s property and two other locations behind his house.

As for how Ellis ended up at Williams’ house that night, Special Prosecutor Lea Hall and the shooter, Gordon, said it was for a robbery. But Williams and Smith disputed that in their testimonies last month, claiming some sort of meeting had been set up through a dating app. The prosecution pointed out during the trial that this narrative was inconsistent with recorded statements to police.

Ellis’ abandoned truck and his cell phone, which had been sold, led investigators to Williams and Gordon.

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