David Johnston, the man who killed Kelley Rutledge Johnston in a domestic violence incident in July 2000, will have a parole hearing in Montgomery on May 25.

Kelley lived for a time in Arab when she was a child and was the granddaughter of long-time Arab City Schools teacher Helen Glass. Kelley also was the sister-in-law of Tribune editor Charles Whisenant.

Kelley’s Rainbow, the domestic violence shelter in Marshall County, is named in her memory.

Also, Kelley’s Law, which went into effect July 1, 2014, was named after Kelley. It made it a capital crime to kill someone with a protection from abuse order in place against the killer.

Kelley had a PFA in place in Madison County when she was killed.

Johnston pleaded guilty to murder in August 2000 in Madison County Circuit Court. He was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. The hearing in May is his second attempt at an early release.

The board denied his request in 2015.

Because of COVID protocols, Kelley’s family cannot attend the hearing unless the pardons and parole board changes its rules before then.

The couple’s children were 5 and 7 when Kelley was killed. They are now 26 and 28 and are both graduates of Arab High School.

Anyone wanting to write the parole board opposing Johnston’s release can send a letter to: The Alabama Bureau of Pardons & Paroles, ATTN: Victim Services, 100 Capitol Commerce Boulevard, Suite 310, Montgomery, AL 36117.

Reference the parole hearing of David A Johnston Jr. – AIS #219775.

E-mails can be sent to: Victim.Services@paroles.alabama.gov.

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