Convicted Cop Killer Sentenced To Life In Prison
Posted June 11, 2001
HALIFAX — A Halifax County judge had the final word after jurors were unable to decide the fate of a man convicted of killing a police officer.
Douglas Travis will spend the rest of his life in prison without the chance of parole for killing an Enfield police officer in 1999.
The judge was required to impose the life sentence after jurors said they were "hopelessly deadlocked" Monday.
Jurors deliberated for about nine hours on Friday and an hour Monday morning before they announced they were unable to come to a unanimous decision. Ten jurors were for the death penalty; two voted against it.
Last Wednesday, the same jury convicted Travis of killing Lieutenant Tonya Gillikin during a traffic stop in Enfield two years ago.
Gillikin's mother declined an invitation by the judge to make a statement before the sentence was read. She also declined a request to speak to WRAL.
After hearing the verdict, Travis' family spoke out. "The whole trial was unfair, it was a farce," says Travis' aunt.
Proseutors say the decision cannot be considered a victory.
"Officers throughout the state who are aware and hear the verdict will wonder if what they do is as important as we think it is," says the Halifax County sheriff.
A second defendant who was in the car with Travis the night of the shooting will be tried. A date has not been set for that trial.