A former part-time Massachusetts police officer accused of shooting up his own patrol cruiser and calling in a hoax bomb threat has died after apparently committing suicide.
Bryan Johnson, 24, was found dead early Thanksgiving morning in his Millis, Mass. home, the Norfolk District Attorney’s Office said. Millis is a bedroom community of 8,000 people about 30 miles southwest of Boston. Prosecutors said there were no signs of foul play and his death is not considered suspicious.
Johnson faced six charges stemming from a Sept. 2, 2015, incident in which he said he was attacked by a gunman who shot up his cruiser and fled. Johnson’s cruiser was found crashed into a tree and on fire, and authorities launched a massive search to find the reported gunman.
But within hours, police decided it was all a hoax, as was a bomb threat called into a local school. Johnson, who was fired, was free pending a future court appearance. A grand jury indicted him Nov. 19 and he was on home confinement monitored by a GPS device, according to court records.
According to prosecutors, Johnson, a police dispatcher who also worked part-time as an officer, fired a personal firearm into the cruiser in a remote area of the town, drove a little further before crashing into a tree and getting out of the vehicle, which then burst into flames. Prosecutors said Johnson told dispatchers that he’d come under fire from an unknown white man in a maroon pickup truck that had fled the area toward the neighboring town of Medfield.
Sourse USA Today