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Georgia Supreme Court upholds Macon man's sentence in death of legal secretary

Legal secretary Gail Spencer was sexually assaulted and suffocated to death while Keith Dozier watched

MACON, Ga. — The Georgia Supreme Court has decided to uphold the conviction and prison sentence given to Keith A. Dozier for the murder of Gail Spencer.

However, Dozier’s conviction for felony theft by taking was reversed by sending it back to trial court where they hope to convict him of misdemeanor theft by taking.

CASE HISTORY

The murder of Spencer took place in October 2012. Spencer worked for Bibb County law office Calder Pinkston & Associates in Macon. She was authorized to make wire transfers from the firm’s accounts. 

Tracy Jones, a secretary at Calder Pinkston & Associates, devised a plan to hold Spencer hostage in her home while Jones transferred funds to her account in Spencer’s place.

Dozier, Jones and Brett Kelly drove to Spencer’s home. Jones created a diversion by asking Spencer if she could enter to use the bathroom, get something to drink, and use the phone. 

Dozier and Kelly entered the house and held Spencer hostage while Courtney Kelly picked Jones up and drove her to work.

Jones transferred about $885,000 from Pinkston’s escrow account into three of Courtney Kelly’s accounts. 

Brett Kelly and Dozier were left at the home with Spencer. 

Brett Kelly sexually assaulted and suffocated Spencer while Dozier stood and watched.

RELATED: 19-year-old Brett Kelly pleads guilty, receives life sentence

Spencer’s body was discovered the next day after neighbors called the police after noticing their dog, who Spencer was supposed to let inside, was found outside. 

A medical examination of Spencer’s body found that she had been smothered, strangled and sexually assaulted.

RELATED: Macon Police say woman was suffocated to death

Courtney Kelly fled after receiving the money in her accounts. 

Jones waited over a holiday weekend until Tuesday to wire transfers for $245,000 and $163,000 so that she, Dozier, and Brett Kelly could split the money. 

Dozier never received any share of the nearly $1.5 million before the four were taken into custody.

Dozier, Jones, Brett Kelly, and Courtney Kelly were indicted for malice murder, felony murder, aggravated assault, burglary, false imprisonment, theft by taking, and aggravated sodomy. 

RELATED: Fourth suspect gets life in 2012 Macon murder

Dozier admitted to being a willing participant in the burglary and false imprisonment and was found guilty and sentenced to life without parole plus 20 years in prison.

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