Alleged murder suspect caught on tape shooting Donald Johnson

The man charged with the murder of 45-year-old Donald Stephen Johnson Jr. was allegedly caught on tape committing the act, according to charging documents.

Johnson was fatally shot August 8, 2016 around 7 p.m. in the rear parking lot of Emery Recreation Center, 5701 Georgia Ave., NW. Police responded to reports of gunfire and found Johnson on the ground of the parking lot suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.

Johnson was transported to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead. An autopsy revealed Johnson’s cause of death was four gunshot wounds.

According to charging documents, surveillance cameras in the area show 46-year-old Herman Lee Cook Jr., the man police say is responsible for Johnson’s death, firing at Johnson.

According to surveillance footage, at 6:15 p.m. Johnson can be seen driving into the parking lot, exiting his car and speaking with a group of people congregated in the lot.

Around 7 p.m. Cook drives into the lot lot and exits his car. While Johnson’s back is turned, Cook approaches, pulls a pistol out of his pants pocket and without saying a word releases fire. Cook continues to shoot even after Johnson falls to the ground.

Cook stops firing and, “casually walks out of the Emery Recreation Center parking lot,” according to charging documents.

Upon further investigation, police found that the car Cook arrived in was registered to him. In addition, a K9 was called to the scene and tracked Cook’s scent to his house on 13th Street.

After securing a warrant, police searched the house and found the keys to the car Cook arrived in.

On Aug.10 police issued a warrant for Cook’s arrest.

Tuesday, almost six months later after the murder, members of the Washington/Baltimore High Intensity Drug Trafficking area arrested and charged Cook.

Cook is currently being held without bond as he faces second-degree murder charges.

The defendant is expected in court March 3 for a preliminary hearing.


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