Editor’s Note: The video above first aired in February of 2022.

MIDLAND COUNTY, Texas (KMID/KPEJ)- A 27-year-old Killeen man was sentenced by a Midland jury on Thursday to life in prison. Javon Elliston was convicted by a jury on three counts, including Murder, Tampering with a Corpse, and Tampering with Evidence in connection with the death of  54-year-old David Demick, who was murdered last year in a Midland hotel.

According to court documents, Demick checked into a hotel in the 3100 block of W Wall Street after he was unable to find a ride home after a night of drinking. Demick checked into the hotel alone, but later, around 2:00 a.m. on February 6, 2022, he was seen on surveillance video in the hallway outside his room as Elliston appeared at the end of the hall. 

Demick then returned to his hotel room and that the suspect arrived at his door a minute later. Security cameras showed that when Demick opened the door, Elliston moved his right arm as if throwing a punch. Elliston then entered the hotel room and closed the door. 

An employee of the hotel said he received a noise complaint at 2:12 a.m. from someone in a neighboring room. The complainant said he heard a commotion and then heard someone say, “You’re going to die tonight”. The complainant also heard the victim say, “Help me! He’s going to kill me!”

When the employee went to Demick’s room to respond to the noise complaint, he said the door of the room was slightly ajar. He knocked, and heard a man say, “I’m naked, I’m naked…”. The employee said he spoke to someone through the door and advised the person to quiet down. 

Around 5:50 a.m., a white bag, believed to contain bed sheets was placed outside the hotel room door. Shortly after, Elliston is seen on camera leaving the room carrying two white bags. Police believe one bag held the sheets and that the other held the victim’s clothes. When investigators arrived at the scene, the victim was found naked. 

Investigators said Demick’s face was bruised, and he had a cut near his mouth. His eyes were bloodshot, and police believe he may have been strangled. 

After Ellison was convicted, and during the punishment portion of the trial, a former girlfriend testified that Elliston had been physically and emotionally abusive throughout the relationship.  Additionally, a corporal at the Midland County Detention Center testified about how the night after the guilty verdict was read, the defendant returned to the jail, assaulted a jailer, and spat on another.  He testified that Elliston made threats to “stack bodies,” and act up every day until he was sent to prison.  After the defendant was sentenced and the victim impact statements were read, Elliston started to yell obscenities at the victim’s family in the courtroom.

The range of punishment for Murder is 5 to 99 years or life in prison.  The range of punishment for Tampering with a Corpse is 2 to 20 in prison or probation.  The range of punishment for Tampering with Evidence is 2 to 10 years in prison or probation.  

Because the defendant had been sentenced to a term of 10 years in the Texas Youth Commission for Aggravated Robbery his punishment range was enhanced.  The jury found that enhancement true beyond a reasonable doubt.  His minimum punishment for Murder was then 15 years.  The punishment range for Tampering with a corpse increased to 5 to 99 years or life in prison and Tampering with Evidence to 2 to 20 years.  The jury also assessed the maximum fine of $10,000 for each charge.