Unit 1012 Cover Photo

Unit 1012 Cover Photo

Monday, March 3, 2014


            We, the comrades of Unit 1012, will remember the late Pastor Clint Dobson who was killed in Arlington, Texas on March 3, 2011. We encourage people to remember how he lived on this earth and not how he died; we thank God that he is in heaven now. We will honor him and make him one of the 26 Christian Martyrs of Unit 1012, where we will remember him every year on March 3. 

Clint Dobson, 28, pastor of NorthPointe Baptist Church.

            Let us hear from people who loved him:

Arlington Church Service Full After Pastor’s Death
March 6, 2011 4:29 PM
ARLINGTON (AP) – More than 200 people packed an Arlington church on Sunday to comfort one another and mourn their young pastor, who was slain during an apparent robbery in which his assistant was severely beaten.

Many cried and hugged each other as they walked into NorthPointe Baptist Church for regular services Sunday, three days after the Rev. Clint Dobson was killed. Some paused at a makeshift memorial of flowers and wreaths and others looked at a picture of Dobson, who was pastor about three years at NorthPointe, a satellite church of First Baptist Church of Arlington. Dobson’s funeral is Wednesday.

The congregation sang the hymn “It Is Well With My Soul,” and church leaders prayed for strength and peace.

The Rev. Dennis Wiles, First Baptist’s senior pastor, said the 28-year-old Dobson had a gentle demeanor and warm spirit, and that Dobson won a top preaching award as a seminary student.

Wiles told the NorthPointe congregants that it was natural to ask questions at such a troubling time.

“Why did this happen? … Where was God on Thursday morning? Could God have stopped this?” Wiles preached in the sanctuary, where a large cross is behind the podium. “God has not abandoned you. That’s what Jesus said. … We’ve got to keep believing, even when we don’t understand.”

A suspect the shooting, 24-year-old Steven Lawayne Nelson, was arrested Saturday by Arlington police. Police declined to say what led to Nelson’s arrest and said the investigation continues. More information will be released after authorities charge him with capital murder this week, police spokeswoman Tiara Ellis Richard said Sunday. She said Nelson did not have an attorney.

No one answered the door Sunday at the apartment of one of Nelson’s relatives where he had been staying.

Police have said some items were missing from the church and that robbery appears to have been the motive. Dobson was found dead and his assistant was found severely injured Thursday afternoon in the church building after relatives could not contact them.

Sunday’s crowd was much larger than usual at NorthPointe, and some congregants had to sit in chairs in a hallway outside the sanctuary. The church barred news reporters from speaking to anyone who attended the service.

After the service, Wiles said it was important that the building be open Sunday — not only because it’s a place of worship, but NorthPointe and First Baptist members and others in Arlington affected by the tragedy needed to be together.

“God has given us the strength to carry on,” he said.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Clint Dobson, 28, pastor of NorthPointe Baptist Church.

Career Thugs Arrested for Robing and Killing Pastor in Church

Funeral Service For Murdered Arlington Pastor
By Robbie Owens & Melissa Newton, CBS 11 News March 9, 2011 9:01 AM
ARLINGTON (CBSDFW.COM) – Friends, family and church members gathered on Wednesday to say a final farewell to Rev. Clint Dobson, the 28-year-old Arlington pastor who was killed in his church last week during a robbery.

The funeral service was been billed as a celebration of Dobson’s life. Although their hearts are broken, those who knew Dobson tried to put aside the horrible way that the pastor died, and instead concentrate on the way that he lived.

“Clint Dobson’s life was lived well,” said friend and Rev. Jeff Waldo. “He loved people and he loved God.”

At a packed and emotional service on Sunday morning, just three days after Dobson was found murdered inside NorthPointe Baptist Church, the young pastor was remembered fondly as a person who loved God and lived a life full of passion and principle.

On Wednesday, more than 1,500 people filled the church to say goodbye to the pastor whose life and death left an impact on the community.

“We’re not going to talk about why, because why is too hard,” said his father-in-law Dr. Phillip Rozeman.

“We don’t ask for answers because even if we have them our hearts would still ache in our chest,” added friend and Truett seminary professor Dr. Robert Creech.

As the congregation and Dobson’s family try to make sense of the tragic crime that took him from them, they remembered him with fond words and loving stories. They recounted his quirky character and playful personality. But above all, they remembered him for his love – first for God, and then for his wife Laura.

“Our little girl was in the arms of a man who would protect her, love her, honor her for the rest of her life,” Rozeman said of the romance Dobson and wife Laura shared. “We thought the story was done, but life changed.”

NorthPointe Baptist Church is a satellite church of First Baptist Church of Arlington. Associate pastor Terry Bertrand and other church leaders have encouraged the congregation to rely on faith during these times. Bertrand even spoke of compassion for the 24-year-old man charged with Dobson’s murder.

“I have prayed for his family, because I know it’s a difficult time for them,” he said. “Just as we’re going through a difficult time, this is a difficult time for his family as well.”

Brad Loper/Staff Photographer
Pallbearers exit First Baptist Church Arlington with the casket of North Pointe Baptist Church pastor Clint Dobson, following funeral services. Two suspects have been arrested in Dobson's slaying. (PHOTO SOURCE: http://www.dallasnews.com/news/community-news/arlington/headlines/20110309-slain-pastor_s-tremendous-impact_memorialized-at-arlington-funeral.ece?ssimg=139797#ssStory139775)
Slain pastor's 'tremendous impact' memorialized at Arlington funeral

Staff Writer
Published: 09 March 2011 02:08 PM
Updated: 11 March 2011 11:52 PM


Hundreds gathered Wednesday to mourn the Rev. Clint Dobson, who was slain last week in a robbery at his Arlington church.

“Clint is a man who lived God’s word. A man whose life had tremendous impact even if it was only 28 years,” said Dobson’s father-in-law, Phillip Rozeman. “Clint would talk to us about faith and putting it into actions.

“It is on these thoughts that Clint based his life, and we cherish those thoughts.”

Rozeman thanked the audience at First Baptist Church Arlington for showing their love “to Clint, and to us” before leaving the pulpit in tears.

Dobson, 28, was killed March 3 during a robbery at NorthPointe Baptist Church, a satellite church of First Baptist. His ministry assistant, Judy Elliott, was badly beaten but survived. Two suspects have been arrested and charged with capital murder.

Dennis R. Wiles, pastor at First Baptist, officiated at Wednesday’s service. He said that his church had received “a tremendous outpouring of prayers and grace from literally all over the world.” He prayed with those gathered for “strength, hope and encouragement” as they moved through the mourning process.

The Rev. Jeff Waldo described his former intern as a Christ-centered person who grew into his faith by becoming the chaplain for his fraternity at Baylor University before entering seminary.

Dobson began seminary at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, but when Hurricane Katrina closed the school temporarily, he returned to Baylor to attend Truett Theological Seminary. He began working at NorthPointe in 2007.

Waldo said Dobson possessed rare qualities that made him a talented preacher.

“Clint had a big heart,” he said, “but the truth is that he had the ability to get into the hearts of others.”

All who spoke at the ceremony mentioned the love Dobson had for his wife, Laura, whom he met at Baylor.

“Our little girl was in the arms of a man who would protect her, honor her and love her for the rest of her life,” Rozeman said. He said Dobson gave his wife the “independent strength that carries her now.”

Daniel Goodman, Dobson’s best friend since childhood, said that although Dobson had many notable achievements, his “proudest accomplishment was finding the person that would be his wife.”

He described Dobson as an “all-or-nothing guy” and an “all-American” boy from childhood, whose charm made him one of the most-liked students in their high school.

But, despite his popularity, Goodman said, his friend remained “humble and gracious.”
“When I have a son, I want him to turn out exactly like Clint,” he said.

Laura Dobson, the widow of murdered Arlington pastor Clint Dobson, offered emotional testimony at the trial of his accused killer. (Credit: WFAA)

Pastor's killer goes berserk after death sentence

Posted Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012
By Dianna Hunt
Just minutes after receiving the death penalty for the brutal slaying of an Arlington pastor, convicted killer Steven Lawayne Nelson flew into a fit of rage Tuesday, breaking a fire sprinkler in his holding cell and sending black water flooding into the courtroom.

Surrounded by heavy security during the 12-day trial, Nelson had sat quietly as a jury in state District Judge Mike Thomas' court handed down the death sentence in one of the highest-profile cases in Tarrant County in years.

Nelson was convicted last week of capital murder in the death of Clint Dobson, 28, the pastor of NorthPointe Baptist Church in Arlington. Dobson was beaten, bound and suffocated with a plastic bag during a robbery of the church on March 3, 2011. Church secretary Judy Elliott was severely beaten and left for dead but survived.

Shortly after Nelson received the death sentence and was led away by sheriff's deputies, the sound of spraying water erupted from the holding cell behind Criminal District Court No. 4 and water poured into the courtroom.

Nelson could be heard screaming and howling from his cell as court personnel scurried to pick up boxes of evidence before they got wet. The water, infused with a fire retardant, sent a chemical smell throughout the courtroom and deputies quickly evacuated bystanders after the trial ended.

"We will probably never see another one like this one if we live 100 years," the judge said later outside the courtroom.

The rampage was just the latest in a string of violent, destructive acts by Nelson in the Tarrant County Jail since he was arrested on March 5, 2011.

Nelson has repeatedly flooded cells, created mayhem and fought with jailers, and he is accused of using a jail blanket to strangle a mentally ill inmate who was placed on the cellblock with him this year.

'Good and evil'

Before the outburst, Dobson's widow, Laura Dobson, confronted Nelson in a victim impact statement after the sentencing.

"No one wants to remember you," she told Nelson, "but they will always remember Clint. ... I vow to be his voice and carry on his legacy, that good will always trump evil."

Laura Dobson's father, cardiologist Phillip Rozeman of Shreveport, told Nelson that the killing of Clint Dobson was "a cosmic collision of good and evil," but he vowed that they will rebuild their lives.

"We know that Clint is in heaven asking God all the questions he always wanted to ask," he said.

Clint Dobson's parents, Rod and Sharon Dobson, also spoke to Nelson about their son and his good deeds, and Sharon Dobson read the epitaph on her son's grave.

"He was generous of heart, constant of faith and joyful of spirit," she said. "I wish you could have known him."

The Rev. Dennis R. Wiles, pastor of NorthPointe's parent church, First Baptist Church of Arlington, issued a statement on the church's behalf after the sentencing. 

"We have all waited for this day," the statement said. "We have asked God for the truth to be known and for justice to be served. ... We also want our community to know that Clint Dobson did not die in vain. His life was given courageously in service to the Lord Jesus Christ." 

Nelson's mother and other relatives testified in his behalf Monday but did not return to court for the sentencing Tuesday.

'Nothing left to lose'

During closing arguments, prosecutors Bob Gill and Page Simpson had urged jurors to give Nelson the death penalty with a prescient nod to the trouble he has caused while awaiting trial. 

"It's like he wanted to violate the conscience of this community," Gill said. "If you think he was hell on wheels in the Tarrant County Jail while awaiting trial, think what he'll be like in prison ... with nothing left to lose." 

Nelson, 25, of Arlington, had an extensive criminal history that began when he set fire to his mother's bed when he was just 3 years old. He had spent years in juvenile facilities in Oklahoma and was sent to juvenile facilities in Texas after his mother moved here for a job. 

He had been released from a court-ordered anger management class just a few days before Dobson was killed, and he had a long history of burglary, criminal mischief, car theft and assault. He described himself as a "monster" during texts to a young woman he was courting, and on the day after the killings, he spent hours partying in a Dallas nightclub with a cross-dressing male lover, witnesses told jurors. 

Defense attorneys Bill Ray and Steve Gordon had urged jurors to hand down life without parole, arguing that Nelson was abandoned psychologically as a child and didn't get the help he needed. His mother, Kathy James, told jurors that Nelson's father was an abusive alcoholic who didn't visit his son, but James also appeared sketchy about some of the details of Nelson's life. 

"We ask that you spare his life," Gordon said.

The defense's own expert psychologist, however, admitted under questioning that Nelson was a dangerous psychopath who was beyond repair. 

Jurors deliberated about 90 minutes on Tuesday before handing Nelson the death sentence. He will be held briefly in the Tarrant County Jail until he can be sent to Death Row. 

Terry Grisham, spokesman for Sheriff Dee Anderson, said the county has no plans to modify sprinkler heads in the jail or courthouse. He said that they meet standards and that upgrading them would be a needless expense for taxpayers. Many inmates know how to break the sprinkler heads, but it happens only occasionally. 

"A child can do it," he said. "But we move literally hundreds and hundreds of people through those cells each week without problems. ... We're not going to change anything because a person who now has nothing to live for continues to call attention to himself." 

Staff writer Bill Miller contributed to this report.
Dianna Hunt, 817-390-7084

Pastor killer could get death


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