A Prince Frederick man accused of raping and murdering a 71-year-old Calvert woman last summer pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and rape on Monday, as well as motor vehicle theft.
David Harold Johnson, 49, will be sentenced in January following his convictions, two of which have a mandatory minimum sentence of life imprisonment.
Johnson was arrested shortly after the apparent June 7 homicide of Rose Marie Long, 71, who lived a block away and was found deceased by family members after finding the house in disarray, charging papers say. Police identified Johnson through a doorbell camera.
Johnson was spotted driving Long’s vehicle in the vicinity of Skinner’s Turn Road, in Owings, by a motorist who had seen a police bulletin.
Police and prosecutors determined Long had paid Johnson to mow her lawn on June 7, and Johnson proceeded to rape her and strangled her to her death with a cell phone charging cord, according to a release from the Calvert County State’s Attorney’s Office.
Johnson admitted to his involvement when interviewed by detectives, the release says, and was later identified through DNA samples. He was indicted on rape and murder charges by a Calvert grand jury the next month before pleading guilty this week.
Long, 71, was a crisis intervention counselor with the Calvert County Health Department, and worked as a substitute food service worker for Calvert County Public Schools.