KJ family drops $100 million wrongful death suit

| March 1, 2016
Source: Family Photo

Source: Family Photo

VALDOSTA – The parents of Kendrick Johnson have dismissed their $100 million wrongful death lawsuit.

In documents filed Tuesday with the Superior Court of Lowndes County, Kenneth and Jackie Johnson used one sentence to dismiss their civil action without prejudice, which allows them to refile the suit at a later date.

The Johnsons filed the civil suit in January 2015, which accused 38 individuals of either causing their son’s death or conspiring to cover it up.

Kendrick Johnson’s body was found upside down in a vertically-stored gym mat at Lowndes High School in January 2013. A state autopsy ruled the 17-year-old’s death accidental. The Johnson family insists their son died of foul play.

The $100 million suit pointed to a conspiracy to covere up the true cause of Johnson’s death. The suit alleged local FBI agent Rick Bell, his two sons and 35 state and local officials either directly caused or covered up the cause of Johnson’s death.

In the year since the filing, the suit was amended to allege Lowndes County Superintendent Wes Taylor and Lowndes County Sheriff Chris Prine conspired to allow unknown persons access to the school’s old gym to hide Johnson’s body.

In October, Judge J. Richard Porter dismissed defendants from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation from the suit for procedural reasons.

During that same month, Johnson’s parents provided sworn testimony during a deposition. A portion of Johnson’s father’s testimony was presented during a November hearing. Kenneth Johnson said he did not have any evidence the Bell family was involved in his son’s death.

Two weeks ago, the remaining defendants filed a motion for summary judgement, which claims the wrongful death suit was based on “unfounded assertions” that defendants in the suit “engaged in a conspiracy to cover up the cause of Kendrick Johnson’s death,” according to court documents.

Chevene King, the Johnson’s lawyer, told CNN the suit’s dismissal was a strategic move to allow federal investigators more time to gather evidence in the case. A federal review of Johnson’s case is in its third year.

Now that the civil action has been dismissed, the Johnson’s could face substantial claims for attorney fees from defendants in the suit.

In addition, the Bell family filed a counter-suit against the Johnsons last year.

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Filed in: Local News, News

28 Comments on "KJ family drops $100 million wrongful death suit"

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  1. BLACKSHEEP says:

    3,2,1 Here comes Leigh

    • Bart says:

      Lol, i love you.

      We should start doing the over/under on amount of words or paragraphs she writes.

      Or how many times she mentions herself.

      • Zipzop says:

        The only thing more sure than Leigh’s dedication to resolving this crap is your constant stalking of her across multiple domains.

        • Bart says:

          Ok, Leigh.


          You make sure that every time this case is mentioned ANYWHERE that your name is associated with it on all of these multiple domains then get upset when you’re called out.

          Stalking? I don’t think you want to have that conversation with me here, Leigh.

          • Leigh Touchton says:

            I’m not Zipzop.

            It’s typical of Johnson family social media trolls like yourself to post thousands of personal attacks at the innocent families who were falsely accused, all of our law enforcement, our state representative Dexter Sharper, the school, the GBI, news reporters and even the school janitorial staff but when subpoenas get filed for your Topix & Twitter accounts you accuse people of stalking you.

            I was asked to get involved in this case. Chevene King and the Johnsons lied to me. I intend to keep speaking out because of the injustice perpetrated on innocent kids. Kids that you have maliciously attacked. Adults like you who attack children behind an anonymous handle sicken me.

            As has been explained to you: if you post your public anonymous attacks (you have posted defamation, libel, harassment of innocent people), there will be legal filings made against you.

            Several people you have defamed are interested in serving you with legal papers.

          • William "Bart" Jordan says:

            Ok. I guess you do want to have that conversation with me here. Out of respect for the citizens of Valdosta, I am going to keep this as tactful as possible (however, I do feel the need to defend myself).

            First off, what you call “personal attacks”, most people call “criticism”. And thankfully, here in America, we have the right to criticize people. I have been completely truthful in my criticism, and I’m allowed to have my opinions and I have not violated any civil tort, despite your accusations.

            YOU criticize members of the Johnson family, the United States Department of Justice, lawyers and activists for the Johnsons all day long, and guess what? You are in your right to do so.

            You are the perfect example of “can dish it but can’t take it”.

            Secondly, if someone wishes to file suit against me for my comments on any domain, so be it. I am fully prepared to defend myself in court, and I will counter sue if necessary, as I have not committed any crime or violated any civil tort.

            You have been threatening me with lawsuits for several months now because of our disagreements (I have screenshots).

            I am not accusing anyone of stalking me for the reasons you just provided. Have you or have you not posted my real name on your FB, and threatened to contact my PARENTS (I’m 35 and they are retired senior citizens) AND my employer? You can deny it, but I have screen shots of you doing just that. The only reason I have an active twitter account is because you continued to talk about me on twitter and I chose to defend myself. (again, I have screenshots).

            You have made it abundantly clear several times that you are a public figure. You have bragged about being elected NAACP President several times. You have made it very clear that you were the “lead investigator” for the SCLC. As a public figure and leader, you should be able to take criticism in stride, and not only that, maybe even learn a thing or two about your faults (gasp!)

            With all that being said, Leigh, I hope you have a fabulous day, and God bless.

            And I pray for all of the citizens of Valdosta to find peace and closure concerning this matter.

    • Leighham Touchtite says:

      You did not know all revolves around me?

      If you disagree with me, you are insane.

      For I AM the great white savior!

  2. Shane says:

    I’m not Leigh but you can be sure I’m celebrating this single step away from the idiocy and madness that has held Valdosta and the 38 defendants in its iron grip for the past few years. Perhaps the tide is about to change dramatically and murder hoax supporters and cheerleaders will take several seats and stop proudly demonstrating their idiocy and bigotry to the detriment of innocent people.

  3. 062014 says:

    Wow, did they finally look at facts?

  4. The Shadow says:

    Facts? When were facts important in this case? An unfortunate accident took the life of a young man. That is tragic enough. The circus following, inspired by hate and political and monetary opportunists, have damaged the lives of so many others, whose only guilt is living in the same zip code or attending the same school.

    I pray for the healing of the community and let both families continue on with their lives.

  5. Robert says:

    You mean to tell me that they won’t be millionaires off of their son’s death?? How sad…how sad in deed. Insert sarcasm here. Hopefully we can all get some break from all the drama caused by an accidental and unfortunate death. Insert serious here.

  6. J'onn J'onezz says:

    They betta call Ken Nugent!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. Curly Bill says:

    Well, the money train stopped flowing, it seems. No money, no attorney to bill those idiots to drag this travesty on. Let it go.

  8. No matter if Leigh writes anything on this board tonight, she is sleeping the good sleep of the justified.

    Next up, The Bells sue everybody and the legal community goes after CV King.

  9. Leigh Touchton says:

    In July, 2013, I participated in a Georgia NAACP State conference call with Mr. and Mrs. Johnson and their attorney, Chevene Bowers King.

    I was astonished at the lies told to many Georgia NAACP officers from around our state. The Johnsons and their attorney created a shocking narrative about a racist hick southern town full of disreputable people, even teachers, coaches, and school officials, who covered up the murder of a black child. They identified the Bell family by name. One NAACP officer referred to Valdosta as “an old-fashioned KKK party.”

    Listeners were asked to send money to the Johnsons. Attorney King said that he was being stonewalled by the GBI medical examiner and the school system. Both accusations were utterly false. Many more outrageous lies were told.

    Lying to the public to influence monetary donations ought to be an automatic disbarment for any attorney.

    According to the Georgia State Bar, it is a violation of attorney ethics to engage in professional conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation. I am filing a Georgia Bar Complaint against Attorney Chevene King. I hope that others in our community will do the same.

    • Robert says:

      You wouldn’t by chance happen to be on the committee for Jimmy Hoffa would you? I’m just curious as you have an awful lot of conspiracies going on here. I figured you may know exactly what has happened to Jimmy since you obviously know what has happened with KJ and his death. Also, since you know what has happened in everything mysterious, could you provide information regarding JonBenet Ramsey, Nicole Brown, and Ron Goldman. Oh, and let us not forget Trayvon Martin because Zimmerman definitely did not murder that kid.

      • Zipzop says:

        So…. Nothing to add but an ad hominem logical fallacy?

        Noted, and your useless input disregarded other than to realize that the immediacy of your personal attack means Leigh is probably right.

        • blacksheep says:

          Nobody ever said she wasn’t right I just said that she only posts when there is a story about the Johnson family and its obvious she is trying to be important

  10. Go get that scoundrel touchton as my daughter is doing so.

  11. blacksheep says:

    Hey Bart looks like Leigh has found herself a sidekick in Merrill Guice he really wants to be important but he never agreed to the meeting I suggested

  12. Rex Reed says:

    At least Al Sharpton won’t be returning to Valdosta and if Trump gets elected, he says he will leave the country. I hope he pays all those back taxes before he leaves. I mean, come on, being a Reverend, he should hold himself to a higher standard. (Has anyone ever heard one of his sermons?)

    • blacksheep says:

      Rex Reed lets just get this Donald Trump talk out of the way I have heard so many people say I don’t support him or will never vote for him I just want to go see him to be apart of the show or it’s historic I have learned that if you go see people who think like this and say things like this you either like it or feel the same way and just don’t have the guts to say it out loud Trump is a P.O.S. and his supporters are no better

      • Robert says:

        Well, I was always told In church that race does not matter and that everyone should be treated equally. So, as a Reverend, isn’t he being a racist by wanting to leave the Country should Trump win. I’ve hear this Sharpton guy and he is the most Racist person I have ever heard. He uses religion and his status to spread his word of racism. I can’t stand the guy.

        Blacksheep….I hate to say this. We now know that we will more than likely be choosing between Clinton and Trump. I almost wish I wouldn’t vote, but I believe that those that do not vote, have no right to complain about the President…so I vote. Clinton has done some pretty bad things…and so has Trump. So, now it’s going to be the lesser of 2 evils. I don’t like Clinton so I will more than likely be voting for Trump by default…not by choice. I don’t support him, I just want to complain about the President because of my belief that my vote allows me to do so.

        • blacksheep says:

          NO, Robert you can’t have a pass on that if you vote for Trump you endorse the type of foolishness you can write in a candidate you don’t have to vote for someone who can’t even bring themselves to disavow the klan so please save it

    • William "Bart" Jordan says:

      “America’s at war with Al-Qaeda! But we’re still losing the war against Al Sharpton!” – Clayton Bigsby