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Cedar Rapids man gets 3 consecutive life sentences in slaying of his family
Prosecutor: ‘Execution ... shook community to its core’
CEDAR RAPIDS — A judge on Friday ran three life sentences consecutively without the possibility of parole for Alexander Ken Jackson, who was convicted in the fatal shooting of his father, mother and sister June 15, 2021, in their northeast Cedar Rapids home.
First Assistant Linn County Attorney Monica Slaughter asked that Jackson, 22, serve consecutive sentences for the “execution” of his family, which “shook the community to its core.” The killings were “abhorrent, heinous and brutal,” she said.
Slaughter said each of these homicides were “separate and distinct” acts and warranted consecutive sentences.
Each family member — father Jan Jackson, 61, mother Melissa Jackson, 68, and sister Sabrina, 19 — died of multiple gunshot wounds fired from different distances, and each victim was shot “up close and personal to ensure they met death,” Slaughter said.
Jackson’s actions following the shootings, including attempting to cover up the crimes, manipulating evidence and shooting himself in the foot, which he blamed on a “phantom” intruder, demonstrate the need for life sentences. she said.
Sixth Judicial District Judge Lars Anderson said he agreed with the prosecution that the slayings were separate and distinct acts and that consecutive sentences were appropriate.
Jackson, who showed no visible reaction or emotion during the sentencing, declined to make a statement.
Per Iowa law, Anderson also ordered Jackson to pay $150,000 in restitution to the estates or heirs of his family.
The family members who attended sentencing did not submit victim impact statements to the court. They also declined to talk to The Gazette after the hearing.
After the verdict in January, Jan Jackson’s sister, Kay Jackson, and his niece, Danielle Jackson Parsons, who were at Friday’s sentencing, said the murders of their family members was a “pain that will never go away.”
“Jan, Melissa and Sabrina were loved,” they said in a joint statement. “They will live on in our hearts and the hearts of those who knew them forever.”
A Linn County jury found Alexander Jackson guilty of three counts of first-degree murder in January, finding he fatally shot his parents and sister in different rooms of their northeast Cedar Rapids home.
If the jury had not convicted him, he would have inherited more than $2 million from his parents’ estates, according to court documents. Because he was convicted, two other relatives of Jan and Melissa Jackson will inherit those assets, the documents show.
According to testimony, Jackson made a 911 call on June 15, 2021, saying somebody had broke into the family’s home at 4414 Oak Leaf Ct. NE, and shot him in the foot and also shot another family member. He could only describe the intruder as a “Black man in black clothing and green shoes.”
Police found no forced entry and found nothing stolen or out of place in the home, according to testimony. Officers found Jan Jackson in the home’s lower level with five gunshot wounds, Melissa Jackson was in the master bedroom with three gunshot wounds, and Sabrina Jackson was in her lower-level bedroom, next to Alexander’s room, with two gunshot injuries.
A medical examiner said each family died from multiple gunshot wounds and that Melissa Jackson had been shot in the eye at close range.
Jackson never admitted to police that he killed his family. He was interviewed for several hours at the hospital while being treated for the gunshot to his left foot but continued to blame an intruder.
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