Relatives of murdered 11-year-old say she was afraid her mom would suffocate her

CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. — Relatives of murdered 11-year-old girl say she told them she was afraid her mother would suffocate her.

That's exactly what Martha Ann Johnson did.

The Cobb County mother was sentenced to life in prison for killing her daughter Jenny in 1982. She was also suspected of murdering her three other young children over several years by suffocating and poisoning them. Police believe she killed the children because she was angry with their fathers.

Now, the victims' relatives are outraged that Johnson could soon walk free. The parole board is tentatively set to release Johnson after she's served nearly 30 years behind bars.

On Monday, Channel 2′s Tom Jones spoke to Jenny’s half-siblings about her death and why they are furious officials are considering releasing Johnson.

On Tuesday, Jones met Hope Lynn Dube, the children's aunt. An emotional Dube said that Johnson's possible release has torn her family up.

"They can't let this lady out," Dube said. "She's a danger to everyone."


Dube said she told the judge during the trial that Jenny told her she didn't want to go home to her mother because she would try to smother her again.

"She says she woke up and her mother had a pillow over her face," Dube said. "This lady took their lives in cold blood. She had no remorse for anything she did."

Clayton County District Attorney Tasha Mosely told Jones that releasing Johnson is a horrible idea.

Mosely said Johnson is a danger to the community and she should never get out of prison.

"What a horrible way to die, at the hands of your mother," Mosely said. "And she is still walking, will soon be walking around free. They never had that opportunity. That's why I'm opposed to it."

Mosely wants the board to reconsider its decision.

The parole board told Jones that Johnson has been denied parole five times. It's unclear when she could be released.

The victims’ families hope that Johnson may eventually be tried for murder in the deaths of her other children.