WATCH: Sevier Deputy in Panic-Attack Case Forced to Resign From Prior Law Enforcement Job

SEVIERVILLE – A Sevier County deputy who opened fire without warning in a neighborhood and suffered a panic attack four minutes later was forced to resign as a Johnson City law enforcer in 2013 after “fanning” a fellow officer with his gun, lying to his chief about an affair and getting in a shoving match with his wife, records show.

Deputy Justin M. Johnson did not include any mention of his short stint at the Johnson City Police Department in his application to work at the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office nor did Sevier County’s background check reveal his prior post and the problems documented in that agency’s file.

SCSO did not respond to a written list of questions sent Tuesday about Johnson’s employment history, why the agency did not conduct an investigation of the December 2016 shooting incident on Sharp Road, whether his omission of the Johnson City job was grounds for termination and Johnson’s current status with the agency.

Mullinax was unarmed and was face-down on the ground several yards from Johnson when Johnson suffered the panic attack.

The incident was captured on Johnson’s body camera. Johnson wrote in a report that he fired seven shots after turning toward a noise behind him. His body camera showed he remained forward, facing Mullinax as Mullinax walked onto a porch with a cell phone, telling Johnson he was filming the arrest of his girlfriend.

He never mentioned the panic attack in his report, but a SCSO detective later charged Mullinax with causing it.

The only prior law enforcement experience Johnson listed in his application filed in June 2016 at SCSO was a stint as a jailer in Cocke County and 18 months as a patrol officer at the Newport Police Department. The dates of those two jobs were redacted by SCSO. The agency did not provide a reason for the redaction.

He worked briefly as a jailer for the Washington County Sheriff’s Office before being hired as a police officer with the Johnson City Police Department in June 2013.

By September 2013, he was in trouble with field training officers, who documented weekly remedial training and worries about his unsafe handling of guns and suspects, records show.

In one incident, a supervisor wrote that Johnson “fanned” a fellow officer with the muzzle of his gun and tried to fight a suspect using the same hand that he was using to hold his gun.

A month later, he was accused of lying to Johnson City Police Chief Mark Sirois in an email warning the chief that a “lunatic” woman with a “fatal attraction” for Johnson, a married father of three, would be filing a complaint against him that he denied in advance.

The woman did file a complaint, saying she had been having an affair with Johnson for years. When his wife found out, Johnson sent her a text, advising her to “kill herself” and called the state Department of Children’s Services with an anonymous complaint that the woman was neglecting her child, according to records.

“She also felt the fact that he was a preacher made his behavior even more inappropriate,” the investigating officer wrote.

Johnson was found guilty in an internal affairs investigation of lying to the chief and “unbecoming conduct.”

“The facts are clear that Officer Johnson intentionally misled Chief Sirois,” the file stated.

Johnson was also accused of shoving and slapping his wife in a fight over her smoking of cigarettes, and she admitted slapping and shoving him over his “adultery,” a report stated. He was allowed to resign in lieu of termination in November 2013.

For full story visit: https://www.knoxnews.com/story/news/crime/2018/01/17/sevier-deputy-panic-attack-case-forced-resign-prior-law-enforcement-job/1034932001/

If you haven't already, be sure to like our Filming Cops Page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Please visit our sister site Smokers ONLY

Sign Up To Receive Your Free E-Book
‘Advanced Strategies On Filming Police’


About author

Filming Cops
Filming Cops 5620 posts

Filming Cops was started in 2010 as a conglomerative blogging service documenting police abuse. The aim isn’t to demonize the natural concept of security provision as such, but to highlight specific cases of State-monopolized police brutality that are otherwise ignored by traditional media outlets.

You might also like