CHARLESTON, WV (LOOTPRESS) — A West Virginia man has been officially charged with first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of a Charleston police officer.
News outlets report that Joshua Phillips, 38, had a court hearing Saturday after he was charged in the death of Officer Cassie Johnson. Phillips appeared before a judge by video because Phillips is hospitalized after he was wounded in the confrontation with Johnson.
Johnson, 28, died on Dec. 3, two days after being shot while responding to a parking lot complaint. A resident had said that Phillips, of Charleston, parked his sport utility vehicle on her property, a police complaint said.
Johnson ordered Phillips to place his hands behind his back but he turned toward Johnson in an aggressive manner, police said. During a struggle, Phillips threw Johnson’s handcuffs into the street and took out a handgun hidden in his waistband, police said.
Phillips shot Johnson in the base of her neck, and the officer then shot Phillips twice, police said.
Johnson joined the city as a humane officer in October 2017 and was sworn in as a patrol officer in January 2019.
Phillips’ lawyer did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment on the case Saturday.