Crime & Courts Richmond Co. | Columbia Co. | Aiken Co. |

Abused woman gets plea deal in husband's killing

Wednesday, Aug 14, 2013 5:27 PM
Last updated 9:32 PM
  • Follow Crime & courts

Alicia Johnson made the mistake many battered women do, her attorney Danny Durham said Wednesday. She married her abuser because she thought she could change him.

Just months later, on July 21, 2010, Johnson, 38, stabbed David Lee Johnson to save herself, Durham said. She wouldn’t have needed a defense attorney but for the fact that initially – because she was scared – she lied about what happened that afternoon, he said.

Johnson was charged with murder in the death of her 23-year-old husband. On Wednesday in Richmond County Superior Court, Judge James G. Blanchard Jr. accepted a plea negotiation worked out by the attorneys: Johnson pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in exchange for a 10-year probation sentence.

Blanchard agreed to sentence Johnson under the First Offender Act.

Assistant District Attorney Justin Jones said the Johnsons’ Sunset Villa apartment showed clear signs of domestic violence. In addition to neighbors and co-workers who gave statements that they had heard and seen her husband verbally and physically abuse Johnson, her home health care patients also witnessed the abuse and were willing to testify on her behalf, Jones said.

That last afternoon, Durham said, Johnson went home to rest between visiting patients. Her husband, who was outside cutting carpet, had “that look” that she knew meant trouble. She locked the front door and engaged the dead bolt but he kicked the door open and started beating her, Durham said. Johnson broke free and ran to the bathroom, barricading the door with a chair. The holes in the door were caused by her husband’s punches, Durham said.

He stopped and the apartment was quiet but Johnson waited 30 minutes before leaving the bathroom, Durham said. Her husband threw a vacuum cleaner at her with such force it broke open. Then he advanced on her with the carpet-cutting knife, Durham said. He was trying to stab Johnson but she was able to fight back, turning the knife so it stabbed him instead.

Afterward, Johnson told emergency workers and investigators that her husband tripped and fell on a knife.

Comments (4) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
nocnoc 08/15/13 - 08:37 am
A well written article.

It fires me up, it grabbed my attention, provided me with the understanding what was reported, had me begging the wanted question without asking it directly.

Given the story written by Sandy Hodson and the last update @ 9:32 PM. It reads like a road map for a clear and viable case of self defense.

Is there more to this case, or is this a case where the legal system does not understand deadly self-defense by abused spouses?

travelp 08/15/13 - 06:52 pm
Not right

She should be given a medal not probation.

CobaltGeorge 08/15/13 - 07:08 pm
It Is One Of Those Cases......

Was not in the Court Room to made a comment.

SB 08/15/13 - 10:06 pm
No Justice!!!

None of these people seen the abuse this woman did to him, tell his little son that there was no justice for his daddy. This young man came to work plenty of times with his face bleeding from her claws in him, the time he come in with the whole side of his face messed up where she was punching him, or the time his work clothes shirt got ripped by her pulling on it. OOPS all the story didn't get told did it. Then at the last minute she changes her story. WHATEVER if he was so dangerous then how come she still married him and every time he wasn't at work he always had your son with him. A man is beating you so you leave your child with him. Don't sound right!!!!

Back to Top
Search Augusta jobs