Suspect Charged With Murder In Drive-By Shooting That Killed Newark Cop

NEWARK, NJ (CBSNewYork/AP) —  A man accused in the shooting death of a Newark police officer is facing additional charges.

Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carol A. Murray said Saturday that 19-year-old Rasul McNeill-Thomas, is now charged with first-degree murder in the death of Officer William Johnson.

Johnson, a 16 year veteran, was killed in a drive-by shooting while he was buying a slice of pizza at a fast food restaurant Thursday night.

McNeil-Thomas was arrested at his home in Newark on Friday and is also accused of carjacking the vehicle used in the attack.  His bail was raised to $1.5 million, up from $300,000 Friday. It wasn’t clear whether he had an attorney.

A second suspect who is believed to be the shooter, remains at large.

The vehicle from which the shots came sped off immediately, authorities said. Acting Police Director Samuel DeMaio said there were multiple shots fired; he didn’t provide an exact number but said it was fewer than 10. Details on a possible weapon used were not immediately released.

Surveillance video showed Johnson was standing at the counter, waiting for his food when the shooting occurred, according to DeMaio.

Police say there were more people in the fast-food place than the three who were shot, and one of them may have been the intended target.

They were asking the public’s help in tracking down any witnesses who may have been inside the restaurant or in the vicinity.

Is Newark getting more or less dangerous? Sound off in our comments section below…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • Primetime Editorials
  • paterson1964

    Are these killers for real or just simply too stupid to know that cameras are all over the place these days — even when you don’t see them.. Now if they think they’re real smart, then they should’ve tajeb out all the cameras first, and maybe they might get away with it….but why invlove innocent people? They deserve to have their lives erased just like an old vcr cartridge. They never lived.

    • Tyrone Everett

      I was talking to a guy one day and he was telling me how easy it was to get awat with a crime and I told him that wih all the cameras, and people who are just fed up with stuipd stuff that people do your chances are slim to none that you will get away now you may hear of the people that get away with stuff but bcause how selcetive hearing you think you can get away with something you not shuld be doing Well this fool went out and stole a blackberry phone out in Mannhattan and got caught he was caught on camera and is serving time now ang get this he was at hte time 50

  • Mike Gilliam

    William Johnson was a childhood friend of mines and I am saddened to here he died in such a manner in a city I love just blocks from where we grew up . RIP Jr ! May the people who did this be punished to the full extent of the law .

  • kendra

    i don,t understand y do we have to have such a long stretch in prison for killing a police officer and when its a regular person they get the minimin its just so ass backwards…when cops to something to us they don,t get anytime for there wrong doing such a backwards society that we live in….and rest in peace to the police officer who died….

blog comments powered by Disqus
Giving Tuesday
Charles Osgood Event

Listen Live