Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

May 5, 2008

The Next Phase of the Kathryn Johnston Saga Begins

by Stephen Littau

(WSB Radio) Opening arguments begin today in the trial of an Atlanta police officer charged in connection with killing of Kathryn Johnston.

Arthur Tesler is the only cop to go on trial for the shooting of the 92 year old woman in her Atlanta home.

Tesler did not fire a shot during the November 2006 incident. But prosecutors say he assisted in the cover up that followed. Officers have admitted to planting drugs to justify breaking into her home.

He’s charged with making a false statement to an investigator, violating his oath of office and unlawful imprisonment.

Tesler’s lawyer, William McKenney, says his client was in the backyard when the shooting took place and was not involved in the cover-up.

Two former officers, Gregg Junnier and Jason Smith, have pleaded guilty to a state charge of voluntary manslaughter and a federal charge of violating Johnston’s constitutional rights.

The very fact that possession of drugs could be used as justification to break into an elderly woman’s home in itself is very disturbing but such is the state of the war on (some) drugs. What is even more disturbing is that in this case, the police admitted to planting drugs to cover up their mistake of killing an innocent person; how often does this happen where the police get away with such cover ups?

Related: Two Officers Surrender in Johnston Death

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