Vincent Allen Johnson

Executed May 29, 2001 by Lethal Injection in Oklahoma

33rd murderer executed in U.S. in 2001
716th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
13th murderer executed in Oklahoma in 2001
43rd murderer executed in Oklahoma since 1976

Since 1976
Date of Execution
(Race/Sex/Age at Murder-Execution)
Date of
(Race/Sex/Age at Murder)
Date of
Method of
to Murderer
Date of
Lethal Injection
Vincent Allen Johnson

B / M / 32 - 42

Shirley Mooneyham

B / F / 44

at DOC

Victim was found shot 6 times in her rural home. Johnson was later arrested for DWI and confessed to the murder. He was allegedly hired by victimís common law husband, Ted Holt, to commit the murder for $100,000. Holt was later acquitted at trial.

Johnson v. State, 911 P2d 918 (Okla. 1995), cert. denied 519 US 839 (1996).
Johnson v. State, 952 P2d 1003 (Okla. 1998).
Johnson v. Gibson, 229 F3d 1163 (10th Cir. 2000).

Internet Sources:

Oklahoma Department of Corrections

Oklahoma Attorney General

Vincent Allen Johnson Execution Date Requested (03/26/2001) - Attorney General Drew Edmondson today asked the Court of Criminal Appeals to set an execution date for convicted murder-for-hire triggerman Vincent Allen Johnson, following this morning's denial of his final appeal at the U.S. Supreme Court.

Johnson, 38, was convicted of the Feb. 8, 1991 murder of Shirley Mooneyham, 44, at her rural Pittsburg County residence. Mooneyham was shot several times with her own gun and a gun Johnson took with him to her home.At the time, Johnson and his wife, Deborah, were living with John Crain at Crain's home in Lona Valley in eastern Pittsburg County. Crain introduced the couple to Ted Holt, Mooneyham's former common law husband. Holt and Crain were upset with Mooneyham, and recruited Johnson to kill her. Johnson went to Mooneyham's residence on Feb. 8, smoked marijuana with her, then grabbed a pistol Mooneyham had sitting on the kitchen table and a gun from his pocket and opened fire with both weapons. Following the murder, OSBI agents intercepted a conversation between Johnson and an informant wherein Johnson admitted his part in Mooneyham's death. In that conversation, Johnson also said that he was mad at Holt for not yet delivering the $100,000 he was owed for Mooneyham's murder.

Johnson had been convicted of manslaughter in 1979, and received a 15-year sentence. "This was a coldly calculated murder committed by a man for the promise of money," said Edmondson. "Vernon Allen Johnson's appeals are over. I have every expectation that the court will schedule his execution, and that it will be carried out according to the jury's wishes."

Holt and Crain were both charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder. Holt was acquitted of the charges against him, and charges against Crain were ultimately dropped by prosecutors.


Vincent Allen Johnson was convicted of the murder-for-hire of Shirley A. Mooneyham. Her estranged common-law husband, Ted Holt, hired Johnson for $100,000. Shirley knew Johnson and unknowingly welcomed her killer into her home. She was shot 6 times with a .38-caliber weapon in her kitchen. Johnson confessed to Shirley's murder after an informant taped a conversation in which he admitted to the murder. Investigators also found the murder weapon among his belongings.

Death Penalty Institute of Oklahoma

Vincent Johnson, 42, was executed via lethal injection on Tuesday, May 29, at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester. He was pronounced dead at 9:07pm. Johnson was sentenced to death for the February 8, 1991 murder of Shirley Mooneyham, 44. Johnson's execution was the 13th in the state this year. Thus far this year, Oklahoma is responsible for more than one third of the persons executed nationwide.

On February 8, 1991, Shirley Mooneyham was shot six times in her home in rural Pittsburg County. She died from the gunshot wounds to her head and chest. She was found later that same day by 14-year-old Robin Dawn Jackson, the niece of her former common-law husband, Ted Holt. In May, 1991, Vincent Johnson was arrested for Driving Under the Influence. A few hours after a breathalyzer test indicated a .16 blood alcohol concentration he waived his Miranda rights and confessed to the murder. John Crain and Ted Holt were also arrested and charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder.

In November 1990, Vincent Johnson and Deborah Elaine Johnson met. They decided to live together and were married in January 1991. In the meantime, the two moved into the house of John Crain. Crain was seriously ill and the Johnsons had agreed to help care for Crain and take care of his horses. Prior to Mooneyham's murder, Crain introduced the Johnsons to Ted Holt. Deborah was asked to leave the room while the three men talked. Not long after that first meeting, Holt returned to Crain's home along with a younger man. Vincent, Deborah and Crain were at the house as well. As on the previous occasion, Deborah was asked to leave the room while the men talked. This time after leaving the room, Deborah listened to their conversation from an adjoining room. She later stated that Crain and Holt were very upset with Mooneyham. Deborah heard them say that Mooneyham needed to be eliminated. After Holt and the younger man had left, Deborah asked Vincent what the discussions were about. Vincent stated that they had asked him to kill Shirley Mooneyham. Deborah testified that at some point after the murder, Vincent told her that he had killed Mooneyham. Johnson was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death.

In a separate trial, Holt was acquitted. Charges against Crain were dropped.

Prayer vigils and protests were held at numerous locations across the state, including outside the gates of the penitentiary in McAlester and outside the Governor's Mansion in Oklahoma City.

New Hampshire Coalition to Abolish Death Penalty (Reuters)

Oklahoma Executes Man Convicted of Murder for Hire

MCALESTER, Oklahoma (Reuters) - Oklahoma executed a man on Tuesday who had been convicted of shooting to death a woman for $100,000 that her husband promised but never paid, prison officials said. Vincent Allen Johnson, 42, was pronounced dead at 9:07 p.m. (10:07 p.m. EDT), two minutes after receiving a lethal chemical injection at a state prison here, said Oklahoma Department of Corrections spokesman Jerry Massie. Asked if he any final words, Johnson, strapped down on the death chamber gurney, said, ``No sir, I don't.'' It was the state's 43rd execution since Oklahoma reinstated the death penalty in 1977 and resumed executions in 1990.

Johnson was not among the dozen death row inmates whose executions were put on hold because of foul-ups at an Oklahoma City police forensics lab. Johnson's case did not involve any work by Joyce Gilchrist, the chemist whose work has been called into question. Johnson was convicted of the 1991 murder-for-hire of Shirley Mooneyham, 44, in rural southeastern Oklahoma. Prosecutors said Mooneyham's common-law husband Todd Holt promised Johnson $100,000 to kill his wife, although Holt was later acquitted in a separate trial. Police said Johnson went to Mooneyham's home and smoked a marijuana cigarette with her before shooting her repeatedly with a gun she had on her table and with one he had brought along in his pocket. In a taped phone call with an undercover police informant, Johnson complained after the murder that he had not been paid.

Johnson's last requested meal was fried fish with tarter sauce, hush puppies, French fries, a strawberry malt and a soda.

The Lamp of Hope (Associated Press & Rick Halperin)

May 29, 2001 - OKLAHOMA - Oklahoma executed a man who murdered a woman in a hail of gunfire and at the request of her common-law husband and a friend. Vincent Allen Johnson, a 42-year-old former oil field worker, said in a taped confession he was expecting payment of $100,000 for killing Shirley Mooneyham, 44. Before the injection, Johnson was asked if he had anything to say. He looked at the ceiling and said: "No sir, I don't."

Authorities said Johnson, firing from guns held in each hand, shot Mooneyham 6 times. Her estranged common-law husband, Ted Holt, was acquited on murder charges. The friend, John Crain, was never brought to trial. During Johnson's trial he maintained his innocence, but authorities produced 3 earlier confessions, including one that was on audiotape.

Johnson becomes the 13th condemned inmate to be put to death this year in Oklahoma and the 43rd overall since the state resumed capital punishment in 1990. Johnson becomes the 33rd condemned inmate to be put to death this year in the USA and the 716th overall since America resumed executions on January 17, 1977.