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Times coverage: Officer pleads not guilty to killing husband

Photo: Tomiekia Johnson and Marcus Lemons. Credit: Family photo provided by KTLAA California Highway Patrol officer pleaded not guilty Thursday to killing her husband in 2009.

Tomiekia Johnson, a 31-year-old black woman, is charged with killing Marcus Lemons, a 31-year-old black man who was a Compton barber and renowned amateur bowler. Johnson told investigators she fired in-self defense after her husband had been physically abusive.

Johnson told authorities that while off-duty she fired the gun, which she had gotten from a relative, in self-defense against her husband.

However after the death investigation, Johnson was arrested last week by homicide detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department at a CHP office in Los Angeles, where she had been assigned since the killing.

In addition to her pending murder trial, Johnson is being sued by her late husband's stepson, DeMarco Lemons.

In his suit, DeMarco Lemons says that the CHP and Johnson are responsible for his stepfather's wrongful death. In court documents filed last June, attorney Leon Gilbert states that Johnson robbed DeMarco of a relationship with his stepfather and that the CHP was also negligent in its employment.

Gilbert alleges that Johnson was ordered to take anger-management classes but did not attend. The suit says no action was taken by the CHP, who could not be reached for comment on the allegation.

Reporter Richard Winton has more on the story: CHP officer accused of killing husband had been ordered to take anger-management classes, suit says

Photo: Tomiekia Johnson and Marcus Lemons. Credit: Family photo provided by KTLA

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