A 23-year-old man accused of firing a stray bullet last spring that killed a pregnant woman as she stood inside her home at the Queen Lane Apartments in Germantown was held for trial yesterday on first-degree murder, weapons violations and related charges.
Cameron L. Johnson allegedly shot Bobbi Booker, 26, in the head, as he fired back at Booker's boyfriend, Michael Thomas, during a gunfight the night of June 1.
Thomas, 25, allegedly fired the first shot from the balcony of his and Booker's second-floor apartment, blasting his shotgun at Johnson, who was standing outside the high-rise building.
Thomas already has been held for trial on first-degree murder and related charges for his alleged role in the deaths of his girlfriend and their unborn child.
Yesterday, Municipal Judge Jimmie Moore held co-defendant Johnson for trial on first-degree murder and related offenses.
At Johnson's preliminary hearing, the prosecution called its sole witness Marcell Darden, 22.
Darden, wearing a baggy, red sweatshirt, acted hostile toward Assistant District Attorney Jacqueline Juliano Coelho, contending that he had not given parts of a police statement that were attributed to him.
"Are you friends" with Johnson? the prosecutor asked.
"You can say that, yes," Darden testified. "We say, 'Wassup?' when we pass each other."
Darden testified that on May 31, he had a fistfight with Thomas, and the next day, he, his brother and another man ran into Thomas in a stairway of the Queen Lane Apartments on Queen Lane near Pulaski Street.
There, he said he threw a first punch at Thomas and the others joined in. Thomas then went upstairs to his apartment, No. 207.
Darden testified that he then heard three gunshots, but had not seen who fired them.
When prosecutor Coelho had him look at a statement he allegedly gave police, Darden said he hadn't signed the statement. "Every signature looks different. It don't look like my signature," he testified.
Coelho then read his statement in court. In it, Darden allegedly said that during the stairway fight, Johnson appeared and said, "Back up!" as he "was reaching for a gun and lifted his shirt" to reveal the weapon.
Thomas then ran to his apartment, and later appeared at "the window and opened fire with some type of pump shotgun," Darden allegedly said.
During the shooting, Johnson was standing "by the gate right next to the boy's [Thomas'] porch," Darden allegedly said.
After getting hit in the shoulder, chest and leg, Johnson "aimed up [at Thomas] and opened fire twice," Darden allegedly said in the statement.
On the witness stand, Darden denied having told police that Johnson had fired a gun that day.
Defense attorney Bobby Hoof argued yesterday that if the judge were to rely on what Darden allegedly said in his statement, there was no evidence of a specific intent to kill, and at most, this was a third-degree murder based on recklessness.
"My client was shot. He just shot back," Hoof said.
Coelho argued that Johnson had been engaged in the gunfight, and because of that, acted with an intent to kill. *