For earlier coverage on the murder of Officer Rodney Johnson, see Officer Down in Houston. He had arrested Juan Leonardo Quintero for driving without a license, but Johnson's frisking missed a gun hidden in the prisoner's waistband, which was used in the shooting. Quintero was an illegal alien who had been previously deported in 1999 for indency with a child and was arrested for drunk driving as well.
"We're just very upset," said Lorraine Crawford, mother of the slain officer's widow, Joslyn Johnson.One bit of good news is that Robert Camp, the crime-enabling employer of the killer, has not been forgotten: Slain Officer's Widow Sues Killer's Employer (MSNBC, May 20, 2008).
"We wanted the death penalty," Crawford said. "He had nothing but malice in his heart."
She added that the jury did not seem to understand the difficulty of a police officer's job.
The officer's brother, David Johnson, was in the courtroom with his wife, Donna Mack, when the sentence was announced. He said he and his wife also had wanted to see Quintero sentenced to death.
"He shot him four times in the back, three times in the head," Johnson said. "I can't believe that. What's mitigation?" [HPD officer's family shocked by life sentence, Houston Chronicle, May 20, 2008]
Ben Dominguez, Johnson's attorney, also announced that a civil suit has been filed against Quintero's employer, Robert Camp of Camp Landscaping in Deer Park. Dominquez said Josslyn Johnson is suing him for negligence.More about Robert Camp's criminal charges: Feds arrest Deer Park businessman.
"The owner of the company gave a man with a warrant out for his arrest, and who had alcohol and drug problems, a car to drive," said Dominguez. "He did not have a driver's license and he did not train him or teach him well. We believe if Camp did not employ Quinterro, Officer Johnson's death might have never happened."
Dominguez said Johnson wants damages of no less than $10 million from Camp. KPRC Local 2 was unsuccessful in attempts to reach anyone with Camp Landscaping for comment.
Camp has also been charged with a federal crime. In January, the U.S. Attorney's Office charged him with harboring an illegal alien. United States Attorney Don DeGabrielle said Camp helped Quintero illegally enter the United States in 1999 and gave him a job and a place to live after Quintero was deported in 1998. Camp also posted bond for Quintero in 1998 when Quintero was charged with indecency with a child.
A Deer Park business owner has been arrested for harboring an illegal alien accused of capital murder of a Houston Police Department officer.
Robert Lane Camp, 47, the owner of Camp Landscaping, Deer Park, was charged by criminal complaint with encouraging Juan Leonardo Quintero-Perez, the accused killer of HPD Officer Rodney Johnson, to unlawfully enter the U. S. and with harboring Quintero.