Thibodaux man gets 30 years for manslaughter plea, avoiding murder trial

A 20-year-old Thibodaux man pled guilty to manslaughter this week after the shooting death of Donovan King in 2018.

Marlon Johnson, 20, was charged with second-degree murder in Feb. 2018 after shooting King in the driveway of Johnson’s Thibodaux home, killing him.

The suspect was set to face a trial for the murder charge in the coming days, but instead pled guilty to the lesser charge manslaughter for his role in the incident.

Lafourche Parish District Attorney Kristine Russell announced the plea this week, which was accepted by the Honorable F. Hugh Larose.

With it, Johnson will be sentenced to 30 years in prison.

“Sadly, there’s nothing that anyone could do in a courtroom that would ever bring Donovan King back to his loved ones,” said Assistant District Attorney Shaun George, who prosecuted the case. “After spending many hours with the victim’s family, we all decided that this was the best resolution to bring closure to the family.”

During the sentencing, the mother of the victim addressed the court and told Johnson that she forgives him and does not hate him.

Johnson, who was already in custody, will begin his sentence immediately. The maximum sentence for manslaughter is 40 years.