Local News

Suspect In Trooper Shooting Faces Additional Criminal Charges

Posted December 7, 2005

— A Virginia grand jury has returned an indictment against a suspect accused of shooting a North Carolina Highway Patrol trooper last week.

The Cumberland County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday that Marvin Bell Johnson, 42, now faces additional criminal charges in connection with a homicide that occurred near Chesapeake, Va., in July 2005.

Johnson, of Richmond, Va., is accused of shooting Trooper J.C. Horniak three times after Horniak attempted to stop him along Interstate 95 last Monday. According to investigators, Horniak noticed the license tag halfway attached to the vehicle Johnson was driving.

In connection with the shooting, authorities charged Johnson with assault with a deadly weapon, inflicting serious injury with intent to kill, attempted murder and assault on a government official.

While few details about the homicide investigation in Virginia were immediately known, authorities were able to connect Johnson to the case as a result of the investigation into Horniak's shooting, Cumberland County authorities said.

Johnson had served time in a Virginia prison for second-degree murder, was on parole and had a warrant out for violating the parole, Cumberland County authorities said.

Horniak, who was able to call for help from his patrol car after he was shot, was released from the hospital Tuesday afternoon, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Crime and Public Safety said. He is now recuperating at home from the injuries he received in the upper torso and in the leg and is expected to make a 100 percent recovery.

Another suspect, Nichelle Steele, 21, of Gardin, S.C., was also charged with accessory after the fact in connection with the shooting.

Johnson is in jail without bond. Steele is in jail under a $100,000 bond.


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