When Sharon Johnson was found murdered at a construction site in Bedford, New Hampshire, the police knew they had a challenging homicide investigation. While an autopsy determined that the victim was strangled and stabbed to death, the case sat without progress for months until a line of questioning led to a teenager called Anthony Pfaff, who implicated Jason Carroll in the crime. ‘Bear Brook Podcast’ season 2 chronicles the shocking murder and follows the investigation that tried to get to the bottom of the incident. If you are intrigued by the details surrounding the crime and want to find out where Jason is at present, we have you covered.
Who is Jason Carroll?
A resident of New Hampshire, Jason grew up in a close-knit family. Although not much is known about his early life, he seemed pretty close to his mother, who was present when the police interrogated him about Sharon’s murder. Besides, people who knew Jason described him as a typical teenager who hung out with his friends and enjoyed life. On top of it, he was rarely in trouble with the law, and he did not seem to have any criminal record before his arrest for murder. Thus, most of Jason’s acquaintances were left shocked when the New Hampshire police considered him one of the primary suspects in a homicide investigation.
On July 28, 1988, 911 operators in Bedford, New Hampshire, received a call about a possible deceased body found inside a sandpit at a construction site. Once the police arrived, they found 36-year-old expecting mother Sharon Johnson lying unresponsive in a pool of blood. While it was apparent that Sharon had passed away before the arrival of medical help, an initial examination noted evidence of strangulation and stab wounds all over the victim’s body. Later, an autopsy determined that Sharon was strangled and stabbed to death while affirming that she was seven months pregnant.
Moreover, the nature of the crime was ascertained to be a homicide, yet the police knew that more than one assailant had attacked her. The initial investigation into Sharon’s murder was pretty slow as the police did not have a lot of leads to follow. They tried to canvas the area around the construction site and hunted for witnesses but to no avail. Even Sharon’s acquaintances who were interviewed had no idea why anyone would want to harm the 36-year-old in such a brutal manner. Most claimed that the victim was quite friendly and had no known enemies.
With time, the police learned Sharon was visiting the Mall of New Hampshire in Manchester before her murder. They also discovered that the victim’s relationship with her husband, Kenneth Johnson, was rocky. Still, he insisted that he was not involved in the crime, and with no evidence, the police were forced to let him go. The case sat without any progress in the following months until the police finally came across an 18-year-old boy named Anthony “Tony” Pfaff.
Once interrogated, Anthony confessed to killing Sharon but mentioned that Jason Carroll helped him commit the murder. Besides, he even claimed that Kenneth hired them for the crime and paid them $5000 each after the pregnant victim was killed. Surprisingly, Kenneth had a different statement, as he insisted that a person named Bob, who owed him money, killed his wife. Yet, investigations proved that Bob was a made-up person, and the police wasted no time in arresting Jason, Anthony, and Kenneth for their role in the crime.
Where is Jason Carroll Today?
Although the prosecution based their entire case on Anthony and Jason’s confessions, they recanted their statements shortly before going on trial for the homicide. Hence, the prosecutors were forced to drop the charges against Kenneth without evidence, whereas a jury acquitted Anthony. However, Jason wasn’t that lucky, as he went through two jury trials before being found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder and second-degree murder. As a result, he was sentenced to 46 years to life in prison in 1992.
To this day, Jason has stayed firm on his innocence claim and tried to get his sentence overturned or reduced. He even has several lawyers working on getting him released, as many believe he is not guilty. Nevertheless, the petitions haven’t been successful in court. Jason currently remains behind bars at the New Hampshire State Prison for Men in Concord, New Hampshire, and will be eligible for parole in 2029.
Read More: Sharon Johnson Murder: How Did She Die? Who Killed Her?