HOUSTON — The family of Joshua Johnson met with Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez and Congressman Al Green this afternoon.
Johnson, 35, was shot by a plain-clothes Harris County Sheriff’s deputy near his parents’ home in southwest Houston on April 22.
After a two-hour meeting with Johnson's parents, Gonzalez and Green, the congressman said he's not satisfied with the answers. Green wants an independent court of inquiry to review the case.
Neighbors say Johnson was house-sitting for his parents because they’d recently been burglarized.
The deputy told investigators Johnson approached his unmarked SUV with a flashlight and what appeared to be a pistol. He shot Johnson, who died after collapsing nearby.
The pistol turned out to be a BB gun and the victim’s relatives say Johnson had it because of the prior burglary.
Investigators aren’t sure if the deputy had identified himself as a law enforcement officer but said he did have his badge.
Back in May, Green released a YouTube video of a HCSO investigator talking with Johnson’s parents several hours after the shooting. He played the video again at a news conference Wednesday.
Among other things, Green complains that officers didn’t question witnesses who live near the shooting and disputed the deputy's account of what happened. He said the deputy speaking to Johnson's parents also failed to show compassion.
HCSO issued the following statement Wednesday when contacted by KHOU 11 News:
"Separate investigations into the April 22 shooting death of Joshua Johnson are being conducted by the Harris County Sheriff's Office Homicide and Internal Affairs bureaus, as well as the Harris County District Attorney's Office. Once these investigations are complete, the findings of these separate investigations, along with the autopsy findings of the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences, will be presented to an independent grand jury to determine whether criminal charges are appropriate. Our condolences go out to Mr. Johnson's family for the loss of their loved one in this tragic incident."
The deputy was part of the Gulf Coast Violent Offenders Task Force in the neighborhood to serve a warrant on a capital murder suspect at a house down the road. It turned out that suspect wasn’t in the house. He was in Mesquite where he surrendered to police.
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