Husband stabbed 89 times: Houston jury acquits widow Janet Alexander for her husband’s murder in 2018

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) – A grandmother, who was accused of murdering her husband and setting her house on fire when arrested, has been found not guilty.

Janet Alexander, 72, was acquitted on Tuesday of the murder of 64-year-old Lionel Alexander. The trial lasted six days.

It was April 27, 2018, when Houston police were called to a home on Valley Wind Drive on the east side of the city.

Lionel Alexander was stabbed to death. Janet told police that the couple argued and things escalated.

She said, he had a knife, and she controlled it. She said she acted in self-defense after decades of abuse.

Houston police confirmed they were called to the home earlier. An autopsy revealed that Lionel Alexander was stabbed 89 times.

A year later, a grand jury indicted Janet Alexander, and when the police went to serve an arrest warrant in April 2019she set herself on fire and her house, almost burning it down.

Alexander’s criminal defense attorney, Joe Wells, said years of suffering led to what he said was a suicide attempt at the time of her arrest. He said the jury made the correct verdict.

Wells said: “She endured a lot of abuse from him, both physically and emotionally. “In the end she was just tit-for-tat. She couldn’t take it anymore, and when he threatened her, she decided it was finally time to hit back.”

Wells said the couple’s children supported her throughout the trial and afterward, jurors said they were surprised she didn’t hit back sooner. The two have been married for more than 40 years.

For more on this story, follow Jessica Willey on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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