Justin Jackson, 18, accused of killing jogger, goes to jail voluntarily

He's charged in March death of Merinda Thompson in Montgomery Co.

Teen accused of killing jogger goes to jail voluntarily

Most people try to avoid serving jail time. But that is not the case for one Montgomery County teenager. He is voluntarily going to jail after allegedly killing a jogger in a car accident.

Prosecutors say Justin Jackson, 18, hit a mother of two while she was jogging on March 4th in Limerick Township, Montgomery County. His attorney says Jackson has so much guilt and remorse that he could not sit at home anymore. So he volunteered to go to jail.

"He was a normal, everyday, regular high school student. And with a blink of an eye, literally, his life has been changed forever," said Jackson's attorney Martin Mullaney.

That is Justin Jackson's lawyer describing the normal life his client had before he struck and killed Merinda Thompson, 40, of Royersford in March. Police say Jackson had marijuana in his system and was texting while driving. Since being released on bail, Jackson graduated high school and sought counseling. But his attorney says that wasn't enough.

"He was sitting at home doing nothing but have this whole tragic incident eat him alive. I mean the guilt and the remorse that he was feeling basically was just eating him alive," said Mullaney.

Martin Mullaney says that is when his client decided he should start serving his sentence now and volunteered to go to jail. Mullaney had a judge revoke Jackson's bail on Tuesday so he could start serving time immediately.

"He did not want to be out enjoying the summer and doing things he knew this woman would never do again. And he understands what he did to that family," said Mullaney.

A trial date has not yet been set, but according to Jackson's attorney, he plans to plead guilty. We tried reaching out to Thompson's family but neighbors tell us they have since moved down south.

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Allentown, PA 18102




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