Kentucky Republican State Representative Dan Johnson committed suicide on Wednesday. He leaves behind a family that is absolutely devastated by the loss. In a heartbreaking suicide note, Johnson declared his innocence from allegations that he assaulted a 17-year-old girl.
Johnson, a pastor, denied the allegations vehemently the day before his death. There were no criminal charges filed against him. But being accused, wrongly or rightly, causes an immense amount of stress. Apparently, it was just too much for him to bear. Whether or not the accusations were true, this death is a tragedy.
Here is the suicide note, which Johnson posted on Facebook, in it’s entirety:
The accusations from NPR are false GOD and only GOD knows the truth, nothing is the way they make it out to be. AMERICA will not survive this type of judge and jury fake news. Conservatives take a stand. I LOVE GOD and I LOVE MY WIFE, who is the best WIFE in the world, My Love Forever! My Mom and Dad, my FAMILY and all five of my kids and nine grandchildren two in tummies and many more to come each of you our a total gift from GOD stay strong, REBECCA needs YOU. 9-11-2001 NYC/WTC, PTSD 24/7 16 years is a sickness that will take my life, I cannot handle it any longer. IT Has Won This Life. BUT HEAVEN IS MY HOME. “PLEASE LISTEN CLOSELY, Only Three things I ask of you to do, if you love me is (1)blame no person, Satan is the accuser, so blame the Devil himself. (2) Forgive and Love everyone especially yourself.(3)most importantly LOVE GOD. P.S. I LOVE MY FRIENDS YOU ARE FAMILY! GOD LOVES ALL PEOPLE NO MATTER WHAT!
Now, Johnson’s wife has come forward to say that she will pursue his seat as a State Representative. Rebecca Johnson believes the allegations against her husband are completely false and would like to continue his work.
H/T Fox News
The wife of Kentucky State Rep. Dan Johnson, who killed himself on Wednesday amid a bombshell report’s accusations of sexual assault, announced Thursday that she would pursue her husband’s seat, saying “his fight will go on.”
Dan Johnson, a preacher and a Republican, committed suicide Wednesday on a bridge in Mt. Washington, according to Bullitt County Sheriff Donnie Tinnell. The coroner confirmed that Johnson died of a single gunshot wound to the head, and the weapon was found near the 57-year-old’s body.
The statement from Johnson’s widow, Rebecca, said she was running for the position because “these high-tech lynchings based on lies and half-truths can’t be allowed to win the day.”
“Dan is gone but the story of his life is far from over,” she said.
His death occurred just days after the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting published a detailed set of allegations from a woman who claimed that Johnson sexually assaulted her when she was 17.
The lawmaker denied the accusations on Tuesday, calling them “totally false.” He said they were part of a nationwide strategy for defeating conservative Republicans, referencing claims also made against Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore.
But the next day, Johnson posted an ominous message on his Facebook page, part of which prompted his family to report him missing, the sheriff said Thursday. In the post, he asked for people to take care of his wife and wrote that post-traumatic stress disorder “is a sickness that will take my life, I cannot handle it any longer. It has won this life, BUT HEAVEN IS MY HOME.”
The post appears to have been removed.
The woman who made the accusations against Dan Johnson, Maranda Richmond, said she attended a New Year’s Eve party at his house in 2012. She reportedly fell asleep on the couch, and in the early hours of Jan. 1, 2013, claimed she woke up to him kneeling over her and alleged he assaulted her. Richmond said that she reported the episode but Louisville police closed the case without charges. The case has since been reopened.
Johnson was elected to the State Legislature in 2016, part of a wave of Republican victories that gave the GOP control of the Kentucky House of Representatives for the first time in nearly 100 years.
The pastor of Heart of Fire church in Louisville, Johnson sponsored a number of bills involving religious liberty and teaching the Bible in public schools. But he was mostly out of the spotlight until the investigative story broke.
A potential opponent for Rebecca Johnson could be former State Rep. Linda Belcher, a Democrat, who hinted at a possible run for the seat in 2018, WHAS 11 reported.
Sexual misconduct allegations are flying all over the place lately. To be certain, not all of them are true. It can be very hard, if not impossible, to prove your innocence.
I have no idea if Mr. Johnson was innocent or guilty. However, I know his family did not deserve to lose him in this way. Mr. Johnson seemed to be an upstanding Christian and even IF he did make a terrible mistake in his past, it shouldn’t be punishable by death. Yes, I believe in holding people accountable, but only when they have been found guilty in court and a fair sentence imposed.
The Gateway Pundit has reported that some on the left are cheering his suicide, even saying Roy Moore should follow suit. What an incredibly heartless thing to say. Even if the allegations were true, to say someone should kill themselves over it is over the top. This man was a husband, father and grandfather. Many lives have been shattered by his death. Suicide should never be celebrated.
Many people have been referencing the Salem Witch Trials when discussing all of the allegations of sexual misconduct floating around. Once accused, people are immediately assumed to be guilty and social media spreads rumors quickly.
We need to be careful that innocent lives are not ruined when investigations aren’t even finished. It is truly scary to think that anyone can come out with any accusation against someone, even with no evidence, and the accused is tried and convicted in the court of public opinion.
Again, I have no idea if these allegations against Johnson were true or not, but the way we deal with allegations needs to change. Both sides should be believed until the evidence is clear. This is a cornerstone of our justice system.
As for Mrs. Johnson, I sincerely hope she wins the seat and can carry on her husband’s work.
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