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News Weatherford and Parker County

Convicted murderer on parole arrested for sexual assault

Parker County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a convicted felon for sexually assaulting a woman over the weekend.

John Robert Morton, 52, was recently paroled for a 1984 murder conviction of his then-girlfriend’s 3-year-old son, Charles Christopher Burns, in Parker County.

Dated court records indicated the toddler died from a massive brain injury resulting from blunt force trauma. Court records also describe additional injuries the child endured prior to his death, including 17 bite marks, and numerous bruises on his back, abdomen, buttocks, and extremities. Morton admitted to Sheriff’s investigators in October 1983, that he inflicted the injuries to the child. Expert testimony from a bite analyst at Morton’s trial described a certain bite mark on the child as “sadistic,” and had been intentionally inflicted to cause pain.

Morton received the maximum sentence of 99 years in prison in 1894 for the murder of Charles Christopher Burns.

Morton received an early release from prison late last year, despite a letter written to the parole board in 1999, by the then-prosecutor of the murder case, former Parker County District Attorney Amy Adams. In her letter to the parole board, Adams urged the board to cautiously evaluate Morton … and that “based on the brutality and obvious suffering of the child victim, society demands protection from this man. The possibility of future victims must be weighed against his right of release on parole.”

Saturday, July 23, 2016, Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to a call in the 1400 block of Ranger Highway.

The victim, an adult female, whose identity is being withheld, reported Morton sexually assaulted her.

The victim stated Morton was an acquaintance, whom she contacted for a ride after her shift. Morton picked her up and took her to his girlfriend’s residence, where the victim frequently stayed. The victim reported Morton made a sexual advance toward the victim, which she declined. The victim then stated Morton physically forced her into a bedroom of the home, as she continually resisted him physically. Morton then told the victim to undress, and proceeded to sexually assault her.

Morton later drove the victim back to her place of work, where she reported the incident.

Morton was charged with second-degree felony sexual assault and booked into the Parker County Jail. His bond was set at $50,000.

Parker County Sheriff Larry Fowler said he expects a parole warrant to be issued for Morton. A no bond is typically set for parole violations.

No further comments or information will being released regarding this case or arrest, due to the ongoing investigation, nature of the crime, and in order to protect the victim’s identity.

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