SNELLVILLE -- Despite pleas to the contrary by a grieving family, Snellville's police chief said this week he does not expect charges to be filed against the shooter in a controversial January homicide.
Darrell Johnson was shot and killed early on the morning of Jan. 5, following an altercation with the estranged boyfriend of his oldest daughter. An Army veteran and district manager for Waffle House, Johnson, his wife and a family friend were at the Snellville apartment that morning after his daughter and 21-year-old Derrick Brown had been feuding.
They showed up to escort Antonette Johnson in to get some clothing and other items before taking her back home to Covington, Darrell Johnson's wife said earlier this month.
After a fight, Brown reportedly shot and killed Darrell Johnson. The former has not been charged with a crime and, though the ultimate decision lies with the Gwinnett County District Attorney's Office, may not ever be.
"At this point, I don't anticipate charges being brought," Snellville Police Chief Roy Whitehead said this week, "but the final determination is pending the response from the DA's office."
Leisa Johnson admits that her husband and Brown got into a fist fight that night, but said about 15 minutes had passed before Brown pulled out a handgun and fired multiple times. There was no immediate threat to Brown, Leisa Johnson said, and no reason for him to fire.
The official police version differs slightly. Authorities initially reported that there was actually a second fight, in which Darrell Johnson fractured Brown's elbow, that led directly up to the shooting.
The district attorney's office is now reviewing the file for the second time after recently asking Snellville PD to pursue a few more interviews.
"We have tried to locate two other people who may have witnessed the earlier (domestic altercation between Brown and Antonette Johnson)," Whitehead said. "We either don't have correct names and identifying information or cellphone numbers that are either wrong or the two will not return calls."
"We have written the report and submitted it to the DA's office," he added.
District Attorney Danny Porter could not be reached for comment.