Charleston Police Officer Cassie Johnson unlikely to survive after being shot in the line of duty

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WOWK File photo of Charleston Police Officer Cassie Johnson

***UPDATE 12/2/20, 8:33pm : A candlelight vigil was held at Laidley Field to honor Officer Cassie Johnson.

Mayor Amy Goodwin and Chief Tyke Hunt both spoke again at the vigil; along with Cassie’s mother, Sheryl.

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – Charleston Police Department Chief James “Tyke” Hunt says CPD Officer Cassie Johnson will not be able to pull through her injuries after being shot in the line of duty, Tuesday, Dec. 1.

Johnson has been clinging to life at CAMC General Hospital where she was taken immediately after the shooting.

“She is still fighting, but her body is unable to sustain life by itself,” Hunt said in a press conference at 5 p.m. this afternoon.

Medical services for Johnson were terminated at approximately 3 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 2.

The officer was responding to a parking complaint in the 200 block Garrison Avenue on Charleston’s West Side around 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 1 when she was shot in the line of duty. Law enforcement said a male suspect shot Johnson and fled the scene. A man caught further down Garrison Avenue was shot during the altercation and hospitalized at CAMC Memorial Hospital overnight. As of this writing, charges in Tuesday’s incident remain to be filed.

More than 70 law enforcement vehicles responded to the call of an officer shot and later even more officers arrived at the hospital to give Officer Johnson and her family support, and many were there all night.

“It’s just unacceptable. It’s just terribly sad,” West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice said during his semi-daily press conference earlier this afternoon. “You know, here we have a police officer that is a hero in every way, as all of our police officers are and all the great work that they’re doing every single day. Just think, these are the people we call when we have an issue or a problem or worry or concern.”

Johnson was sworn into the CPD in January 2019 at 26-years-old after serving as a humane officer. She was the first female officer sworn into the department by Charleston’s first female mayor, Amy Goodwin.

Thoughts and prayers from law enforcement from across the Mountain State have been pouring in for Johnson and her family since the shooting.

Charleston Police Chief of Police James “Tyke” Hunt and Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin issued a statement just after 4 p.m., Dec. 1:

“This afternoon, a Charleston Police Officer was shot while in the line of duty, The officer has been transported to the hospital and is in surgery at this time. We ask all Charleston residents to keep our officer and the entire Charleston Police Department in their thoughts and prayers. We will provide more information as it is available.”

Chief of Police Tyke Hunt and Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin

The suspect in the shooting, Joshua Phillips, 38, was out on bond for driving on a revoked license following a DUI and also had a charge of brandishing a weapon, according to criminal complaints in 2019 and 2020.

“Not only do we need your prayers tonight for Cassie, but we need prayers tonight for her mother Cheryl, her sister Chelsie, but also for our first responders who make these calls every single day,” Goodwin said following the shooting.

Hunt says Johnson has “one final parting gift to help others.” She is an organ donor. He says doctors are working with her family to determine eligibility and work out donorship.

“I commend her, for even in her passing, still being the true hero that I know she is. And I just, I continue to, ask for the prayers for Cassie Johnson and her family,” Hunt said.

The City says a vigil for Johnson will be held tonight at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 2 at Laidley Field. Officials say traffic should enter from Washington Street, down Elizabeth Street to enter the Laidley Field parking lot. Individuals are encouraged to bring candles.

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