Houston rapist who confessed to two murders sentenced to 65 years

Houston rapist who confessed to two murders sentenced to 65 years

A Houston man who confessed to two murders after being arrested for rape has pleaded guilty to all three crimes in exchange for a sentence of 65 years in prison, Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg announced Thursday.

“No one in our community was safe until we got this man off the streets,” Ogg said. “We have ensured a conviction and ensured he is headed to prison for a long time.”

Chris Dontrell Roddy, 31, was originally arrested in July 2020 for the sexual assault of a female jogger in MacGregor Park in February of that year. DNA linked him to that rape.

While in the Harris County Jail awaiting trial, a Houston police detective interviewed him about the April 2017 death of Kithy Pagett, a 34-year-old woman who was shot in the back of the head at her Greater Greenspoint apartment. She was one of Roddy’s neighbors and the two knew each other. His DNA was found on a soda can near the crime scene, but because they were acquaintances there was not enough evidence to charge him.

During the police interview, Roddy said he had recently had a religious conversion and confessed to killing Pagett. He also confessed to killing Dantrell Burks, a stranger who was riding his bicycle at the same apartment complex, in 2016. He shot Burks multiple times, and the case had gone cold.

Roddy will not be eligible for parole until he has served 30 years in prison, which is the same as if he had been sentenced to a longer prison sentence, including life in prison. A defendant convicted of murder has to serve at least half of their prison sentence, but it is capped at 30 years.

Prosecutors consulted with victims’ families prior to the agreement on sentencing.

Assistant District Attorney Brett Batchelor, who prosecuted the case, said the plea deal was the right result.

“He was hurting random people who were completely innocent with no rhyme or reason,” Batchelor said. “These victims he killed had families, they had children, who will never see them again. He caused a lot of hurt.”