Person in jail beating video shot to death - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Kontji Anthony

Person in jail beating video shot to death

Updated:
Duanna Johnson Duanna Johnson
Johnson, a transgendered person, was in the news last June after a video was released showing an officer repeatedly beating her at the Shelby County Criminal Justice Center. Johnson, a transgendered person, was in the news last June after a video was released showing an officer repeatedly beating her at the Shelby County Criminal Justice Center.

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - The victim of an early Monday shooting in north Memphis has been identified as Duanna Johnson, investigators with the Memphis Police Department said.

Johnson, a transgendered person, was in the news last June after a video was released showing an officer repeatedly beating her at the Shelby County Criminal Justice Center.

According to police, the execution-style shooting happened just after midnight near North Hollywood and Staten. When officers arrived at the scene, they found Johnson suffering from a gunshot wound to the head.

She died a short time later, investigators said.

According to police, a witness saw a group of people running from the scene after the shooting, but no one is in custody.

Johnson's attorney, Murray Wells, told Action News 5 late Monday morning that Johnson had a history of prostitution arrests and had been known to frequent the corner where the shooting occurred.

Wells said because Johnson was transgendered, she often became the target of hate. He recently convinced Johnson to move to Wisconsin to live with her mother, Hazel Skinner

"It's just very sad," Wells said. "There was so much that happened to her in her life, and she went through so much, and if you really knew Duanna, there was a sweet, sensitive side to her as a person."

In Wisconsin, Skinner spoke about Duanna's death.

"It's very emotional," she said. "That was my oldest child."

At the time of her death, Johnson was in the middle of a lawsuit against the Memphis Police Department. Wells said that lawsuit would continue as planned.

"The only thing we know how to do now is carry her voice on," he said. "Justice is till out there.

Officer Bridges McRea, who can be seen striking Johnson in the surveillance video, was fired, and is fighting to get back on the force.


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