William R. Johnson - 5/22/20

William R. Johnson (Photo: Metro Nashville Police Department)


NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - A grassroots organization in Nashville is calling for an “immediate investigation” into the shooting of a 48-year-old man by the Metro Police Department last month.

William Johnson Jr. shot an off-duty Metro Police Officer Darrell Osment while he was walking his dog near the intersection of Pine Valley and Bull Run roads on May 21.

Johnson fled the scene and fired on officers pursuing him during a "high speed chase" near the intersection of Clarksville Pike and Ed Temple Boulevard, police said.

An officer attempted to deploy spike strips to stop the car near the intersection of Ed Temple and Dr. D.B. Todd boulevards, according to police. Police said reported that Johnson fired more shots at officers.

A spike strip was used on I-440, where Johnson stopped, and police said he exchanged fire with officers. Three Metro officers fired on the suspect and Johnson died at the scene. TBI said there were about 50 shots fired on I-440.

Community Oversight Nashville Now is a grassroots organization that campaigned for Community Oversight Board in Nashville and works for police accountability in the city. They are saying there are "several concerns yet to be addressed." They are now calling on the Community Oversight Board and District Attorney to investigate the shooting.

The concerns by the Community Oversight Now start with Osment being the only eyewitness to the initial shooting.

Their second concern is Osment and Johnson said hello to each other before he fled the scene in his car. Community Oversight Now said Johnson has a history of sleeping in church parking lots where his car could have been parked.

Third, Community Oversight Now said there is no footage of the incidents between Johnson and the Metro Police Department.

Community Oversight Now said it is unclear if Johnson knew Osment was a police officer since he was not wearing his uniform. Community Oversight Now added it is unclear if Osment after identified himself as a police officer.

It is unclear if Johnson ever left his vehicle and even approached Osment because he has a history of sleeping in church parking lots.

Community Oversight Now said they talked with Johnson family and they said they had concerns with the case.

“We may never know the full story of the extrajudicial killing of Mr. Johnson by the MNPD. But what we do know is that the details of the incident that lead to Johnson’s death are sketchy and rest solely on the account provided by MNPD,” Community Oversight Now said on its social media pages.

Community Oversight Now called for an “immediate investigation” into the shooting.

“At this unprecedented moment in history, Nashville’s public officials must demonstrate their commitment to police accountability,” Community Oversight Now said on its social media pages.

To read the group's full statement, click here. 


WSMV.com is now with you on the go! Get the latest news updates and video, 4WARN weather forecast, weather radar, special investigative reports, sports headlines and much more from News4 Nashville.

>> Click/tap here to download our free mobile app. <<

Copyright 2020 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.