On September 22, 2011, the Dougherty County Superior Court ordered the execution of Marcus Ray Johnson. Commissioner Brian Owens set the date for October 5, 2011 at the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison in Jackson at 7:00 p.m.
On Tuesday, October 4, 2011, a lower court delayed the execution, after new evidence in the case surfaced.
On Thursday, October 6, 2011, Dougherty County Superior Court Judge Willie Lockette granted a stay, and set a hearing scheduled for February 1, 2012, on a motion for additional testing. The Georgia Supreme Court agreed with the lower court in an unanimous ruling.