- Johnnie Allbritton was shot and killed in his home in May of 1984
- Police had believed Johnnie was shot and killed by burglars until now
- Cold Justice accepted the case over 30 years later and discovered evidence against his wife Norma Allbritton
- Norma was arrested on July 1 and released on bail on July 3 after posting a $50,000 bail
- Investigators are now reexamining the suicide of their 13-year-old daughter Pam Allbritton in 1981
An arrest was made in a murder case that occurred 35 years ago thanks to the help of reality-based television show “Cold Justice.” On July 1, 84-year-old Norma Allbritton was arrested for the murder of her husband Johnnie E. Allbritton at their Buffalo, Texas residence.
The Murder Of Johnnie Allbritton
An article from The Eagle on May 16, 1984, states Jimmie was possibly shot by “burglars” at his home in the morning. His body was not discovered until the afternoon by Norma and their son. Johnnie was shot five times in the chest and back with his own 20-gauge shotgun.
Johnnie’s body was found in a hallway between the kitchen and the den along with a blanket the Leon County Sheriff’s Department believed was being used by burglars to carry out guns and other items from the house. No household items were reported as taken but family members did say a “blue bank bag” with thousands of dollars was missing.
Johnnie was the owner of Allbritton’s Grocery Store and had returned home to do yard work before the fatal shooting. He was not expected to return to the store for the rest of the afternoon. When Johnnie did not pick up their son from school the family began getting worried.
Norma Allbritton Never Showed For Her Polygraph
Two weeks after her husband’s murder, Norma was scheduled to take a polygraph. Norma never made it to her polygraph because she allegedly shot herself accidentally after she dropped a .410 shotgun. Norma’s polygraph was never rescheduled. Authorities claim the stories of how the accidental shooting have been inconsistent.
The investigation into Johnnie’s murder never turned up any strong leads. No suspects were ever arrested or even given a polygraph. With no strong leads to go off, the murder eventually became a cold case. Over the years the case would occasionally be reopened with little to no advances. After the 30 year anniversary of the murder, Leon County Sheriff Kevin Ellis digitized the files and evidence and sent it into Cold Justice for consideration.
The shows producers accepted the case. After five weeks of prep work by LCSO investigators, Cold Justice investigator Johnny Bonds — a retired homicide investigator for the Houston Police Department — joined sheriff’s deputies as they traveled the state speaking with people of interest from a case over three decades old.
Along with getting the tab for the cost of conducting the investigation, Cold Justice also brought their own cutting-edge forensic technology to speed things up. This allowed investigators to bypass the extremely long wait for overworked state police labs to process evidence. By June 27, Ellis had acquired enough evidence to go in front of a grand jury to get an indictment against Norma for the murder of her husband.
I’m very enthusiastic about how the investigation is progressing. We hope to close this case for good in the near future.Kevin Ellis Leon County Sheriff
Norma was taken into custody on July 1. She is charged with first-degree murder and faces life in prison and a fine up to $10,000. Norma was released from the Leon County Jail on July 3 after she posted a $50,000 bail.
The “Suicide” Of 13-Year-Old Pam Allbritton
Pam’s half-sister Judy Robinson told KBTX she does not believe Pam’s death was accidental. Robinson says the night before her death she was excited because she was invited to start working out with the basketball team. Pam was a bookkeeper for the team. Ellis stated the investigation into Johnnie’s murder “raised suspicion” in Pam’s death. “Robinson claims Norma was the meanest person on Earth.”
She was the meanest person on earth I will say that. I have never, ever come across anybody that was evil as that woman was and my life like I said she raised me and she was a mean womanJudy Robinson Via KBTX