Westside Shooter Pleads 'Not Guilty' to Drug and Weapons Charges - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Fayetteville, AR

Westside Shooter Pleads 'Not Guilty' to Drug and Weapons Charges

JANUARY 26, 2007 - Posted at 11:44 a.m. CST, updated at 2:59 p.m. CST

 

FAYETTEVILLE, AR - Mitchell Johnson, one of two former Westside Middle School students who opened fire on their schoolmates and teachers in a deadly shooting spree in the hills west of Jonesboro in 1998, pleaded not guilty to drug and weapons charges this morning in a district court in Fayetteville.

According to sources, neither Johnson nor his attorney actually appeared in court, but phoned in the plea to court officials. 

The 22-year-old Johnson was arrested on New Year's Day in Fayetteville after a traffic stop allegedly yielded the discovery of a small amount of marijuana in his pocket.  Police also found a loaded handgun inside Johnson's van.

Johnson was in the van with Justin Trammell, who was convicted as a juvenile in Benton County of killing his father with a crossbow.  Trammell was cited for careless driving but not arrested.  He has entered a not guilty plea to the traffic charge.

Separately, Trammel was charged with threatening to kill the mother of his 3-year-old son.  He was jailed yesterday on a terroristic threatening charge and remains in the Benton County Jail.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

JANUARY 26, 2007 - Posted at 7:33 a.m. CST

 

FAYETTEVILLE, AR - Mitchell Johnson, one of two Westside Middle School students who opened fire on their schoolmates and teachers in a deadly shooting spree in March of 1998 in the hills just west of Jonesboro, is once again due in a courtroom again today, this time in northwest Arkansas.

The 22-year-old Johnson was arrested in Fayetteville on New Year's Day after a traffic stop yielded the discovery of a small amount of marijuana in his pocket.  Police then searched Johnson's van and found a loaded 9-milimeter handgun.  Johnson has since been released from the Washington County Jail on a $1,000 bond and faces misdemeanor charges of possession of a controlled substance and carrying a weapon.  He is to be arraigned today.

Johnson and Andrew Golden killed four students and a teacher at Westside nearly nine years ago.  The two were adjudicated guilty by a juvenile court judge, and Johnson was released from federal custody in 2005, when he turned 21.  He now lives in Fayetteville.

Golden remains incarcerated but is expected to be released on May 25 of this year, his 21st birthday.

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