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Grand jury declines to indict HCSO deputy who killed Joshua Johnson

Joshua Johnson, 35, was killed last April by Tu Tran, a 12-year veteran HCSO deputy working undercover on the Gulf Coast Task Force.

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas — A grand jury has decided not to indict a Harris County Sheriff's Office deputy involved in the shooting death of Joshua Johnson.

According to District Attorney Kim Ogg, all evidence was presented to a jury who handed down a no-bill, declining to charge anyone with a crime.

“As with all officer-involved shootings, we presented all of the evidence to a grand jury and gave parties the opportunity to come forward to testify,” Ogg said.

Johnson, 35, was killed last April by Tu Tran, a 12-year veteran HCSO deputy working undercover on the Gulf Coast Task Force. He was tracking a capital murder suspect the morning of the deadly encounter. 

RELATED: HCSO: Plain-clothes deputy fatally shoots man with BB gun

Johnson was house-sitting for an elderly neighbor in the 15000 block of East Ritter Circle, not far from his parent's house, when investigators said he approached the officer's unmarked vehicle with a flashlight and a BB gun. 

The DA's office said Johnson tapped on the deputy’s window and the officer pulled his gun. The deputy then lowered his window and told Johnson to put down his gun. Instead, Johnson raised the weapon and the deputy fired multiple times from his car, according to the DA's office. 

Johnson's family didn't believe the deputy's story added up.

The family said they found one of the deputy's bullets far from where Tran said the deadly encounter happened.

"That bullet is not going to go through Joshua's chest, out his back, across the street, over four cars and around that corner, it is impossible," Hudson said.

 The family was hoping this was enough evidence for an indictment.

In a statement, Ogg stressed that the Civil Rights Division probe was thorough in the investigation. 

“Every bit of evidence was presented to grand jurors for their consideration,” she said. “We left no stone unturned; a grand jury is the civilian review board of the justice system and they have the power of subpoena to review everything.”