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CHP officer arrested in husband's slaying [Updated]

A California Highway Patrol officer who fatally shot her husband two years ago in what she said was self-defense was charged with the man's killing on Tuesday, prosecutors said.

Tomiekia Johnson, 31, of Compton, was arrested by Los Angeles Sheriff's deputies, according to the district attorney's office.

The officer had initially told sheriff’s homicide investigators that she retrieved a handgun and shot her husband once in the upper body after an argument erupted and he became verbally and physically abusive. Prosecutors, however, say she intentionally shot her husband, a father of two.

The shooting occurred shortly after 11 p.m. on a Saturday in 400 block of Amantha Avenue in Compton. The officer did not remain where she shot her husband but drove to her parents’ home and reported the killing from there. She was not arrested at the time of the shooting and was off-duty.

Sheriff’s homicide detectives, however, doubted the story especially after family members and friends of the 31-year-old barber at Platinum Cutz in Compton described him as a peaceful man not known to be violent. By contrast, witnesses told investigators the officer had a history of drinking heavily.

The couple had met through a local bowling alley, Cal Bowling Lanes in Lakewood.

[Updated 3 p.m.: CHP Sgt. Denise Joslin said Tuesday that Johnson has been employed with the department since 2002.  When CHP officials were initially notified about the criminal investigation into the off-duty incident in 2009, Johnson was immediately placed “in a non-enforcement administrative position,” Joslin said. At the conclusion of the criminal investigation, and in conjunction with Tuesday’s arrest, the CHP immediately placed Johnson on administrative leave without pay, Joslin said.]


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Click to visit The Times' interactive Homicide Report

Comments () | Archives (14)

Why did it take two years for an arrest ? Was the officer on active duty during the two years ?

The reporter lists an irrelevant fact like where the couple met but doesn't provide any explanation of how a murderer remained free for two years.


TWO YEARS to make the arrest... please.

When will the LA Sheriff come out and publicly denounce all bowling fans and those who bowl for enabling this senseless tragic slaying with their violent pastime/sport? It's unrepentant and highly enthusiastic bowling that is ruining the political discourse in this nation today...

Throw the book at her. Go straight to jail. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200.

A CHP that drinks heavily? You don't say?

Can't leave the ghetto.

How can we be sure that she wasn't racially profiled by the racist LAPD Sheriffs?

@SK8FREE- please do not use my cousins murder to exercise an opinion about the current political climate. i think the sarcasm is insensitive. there are two fatherless children due to this tragedy and you and anyone else that makes a joke are actually devaluing life. i understand the point that you are making but please not here. we have waited two years for even an arrest. moreover, the comment about the sheriff and profiling is also a horrible thing to say when dealing with tragedy. to see what you are posting is painful. when my cousin was murdered he was called a suspect, a wife beater and a horrible person, and now two years later we will just be grateful to have his name clreared..... thank you

Maybe it took 2 years so everyone would forget that the SO originally described Marcus as having been "shot in the upper torso" to fool everyone into thinking it was self-defense.

Much like it took a month for the CHP to produce a 911 tape after Mark Saylor killed his family so that people wouldn't think Saylor was married to Danny Devito. (The day after the crash, they claimed Saylor's wife made the call.)

@jr - its a public forum

I have followed this case for two years . In the desire to protect one of their own in this case is way over the line . If it was a civilian they would have gone to jail and be found guilty by now/

Was this a affirmative action hire that like so many others that went wrong ?

A possible drunk CHP officer while driving a State Vehicle ? Just the image the CHP needs .

Please allow me to enlighten you. The investigation, and subsequent filing of the case took two years because the prosecution does not want to take a case like this to trial until they have ALL of the AMMUNITION to obtain a conviction.

The last thing they want to do is take a murder case to trial, and lose.

Wow....Looks like CHP really tried to protect their own here, had this been an average Joe, they would have been 20 months into their sentence by now.


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