Man claims self defense; murder charge dropped

JONESBORO, Ark. – Jonathan Johnson pleaded guilty on May 7, 2018, to Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, a class D felony and was sentenced to felony probation, $1,000 fine, 198 days in the county jail, court costs and fees.  Jonathan Johnson was arrested on October 11, 2017 and charged with Murder, First Degree in the death of Dewayne Turner. After further investigation by Det. Jacob Daffron and the Jonesboro Police Department, the Craighead County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office recommended the State no longer pursue the Murder, First Degree charge.

On the night of October 10, 2017, Jonesboro Police Department responded to a call of shots fired at 903 Logan Avenue.  Officers found Dewayne Turner lying in the street.  He was dead from an apparent gunshot wound.  A 9mm handgun was on the ground next to Mr. Turner.

Four hours after the initial call, Jonathan Johnson appeared at St. Bernard’s emergency room with a gunshot wound.  Det. Daffron meet with Johnson at St. Bernard’s emergency room.  Johnson did admit to shooting Turner but gave few other details to clarify the circumstance.

On March 12, 2018, Det. Daffron re-interviewed Mr. Johnson after Mr. Johnson’s attorney made the request.  After review of this statement, the significant forensic and digital evidence, the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office has concluded that on October 10, 2018, Johnson, after being shot, used deadly force in self-defense of his person in his home.  The deadly force used resulted in the death of Dewayne Turner.  Evidence collected from the crime scene is consistent with the statement given by Johnson.  As all evidence points toward this affirmative defense of justification under A.C.A. § 5-2-607, the State declines to move forward on the Murder, First Degree count.

The Prosecuting Attorney has recommended that the Jonesboro Police Department continue to investigate the involvement and possible criminal conduct of other individuals in this matter. Because of the on-going investigation, the Prosecuting Attorney will make no further comments on the evidence.  The Prosecuting Attorney commends Det. Daffron for his diligent efforts and investigation to seek out the truth in this case.

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