New details about key player in Elizabeth Johnson case

PHOENIX - Attorney Benjamin Taylor represented Jack Smith when he testified at his wife's trial back in 2012. 

Tammi Smith was found guilty for her role in the days and weeks leading up to the disappearance of eight-month-old Gabriel Johnson.

"Tammi was charged with two felonies for trying to interfere with the adoption of Elizabeth Johnson's baby," Taylor said.

Tammi served some time behind bars.  Then she, Jack and their two daughters moved to the Payson area to start fresh.

"They were just trying to move on with their lives and put this behind them," Taylor said.

That plan took a tragic turn a few days ago when Jack was in a single vehicle rollover in the Payson area. 

He was treated and released from a local hospital, but then died from a heart attack at home the next day. 

ABC15 has learned the Payson Police Department is investigating his death.

"It's kind of ironic that he passed away the same week that Elizabeth Johnson is being released," Taylor said.

ABC15 cameras were rolling when Johnson had her first moments of freedom early Friday morning .

"Even last night, just minutes before we walked out of the prison, she was saying to me, 'Marc, I can't believe it's really going to happen. Finally, I'm going to get out of here,'" said Johnson's attorney, Marc Victor.

Four and a half years after her baby boy disappeared, Johnson gets a fresh start.

"Justice was served in this case," Victor said.

Print this article Back to Top

Your Region News
West Valley Phoenix Metro Southeast Valley Northeast Valley Northern Arizona Central/Southern AZ