Grand Jury Hands Up Attempted Capital Murder Indictment in Deputies’ Shooting

A Loudoun grand jury on Monday issued 11 felony indictments against the Sterling man accused of shooting two Loudoun deputies on Christmas Eve. Douglas V. Johnson faces multiple charges of attempted capital murder, assault, shooting in an occupied building and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.

A seven-day trial is scheduled to begin Feb. 4, 2019.

According evidence presented at a preliminary hearing in Loudoun District Court, deputies Katherine Fischer, Tim Iversen, and Justin Nyce responded to a domestic dispute at Johnson’s home in Sterling at about 4 p.m. Dec. 24. After an hour-long effort to deescalate a days-long dispute between Johnson and his 19-year-old daughter, deputies decided to arrest the father.

Fischer said Johnson became agitated when he was told the deputies were going to arrest him on a domestic violence charge. He lunged for a gun in a bedroom closet and Fischer and Iverson were shot as the three deputies tried to subdue Johnson.

Johnson is a former U.S. Army major who was awarded a Bronze Star and other decorations during a military career that included serving 42 months in combat zones. Since leaving military service, he has been working in the intelligence field and holds the highest level of security clearance. While in custody at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center, Johnson has been given mental health treatment and medication.

In February, his attorneys sought his pretrial release to be with his family and seek more intensive treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder and depression, but he was denied bond.

An appeal of that bond denial is scheduled to be heard May 25 in Circuit Court.

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