Woman Who Killed Cleveland Police Chief’s Brother is Dead

Dana L. Johnson, 36, in a 2009 booking photo. (Photo: Cuyahoga County Jail)
Dana L. Johnson, 36, in a 2009 booking photo.
(Photo: Cuyahoga County Jail)

A woman suspected of killing the brother of Cleveland’s police chief has died at a hospital here after shooting herself in the head along a Pennsylvania highway, a medical examiner’s office said Thursday.

The Allegheny County medical examiner’s office confirmed the death of Dana Johnson, 36, of Cleveland but couldn’t immediately say when she died. Her body is still in the custody of the Center for Organ Recovery & Education, which is overseeing donation of her organs.

Hospital officials didn’t immediately respond to a request for information.

Cleveland police obtained an arrest warrant Tuesday for Johnson after officers found her boyfriend, William D. Williams, 34, fatally shot at her home. He was the brother of Cleveland police Chief Calvin Williams.

A neighbor and friend of the couple called their relationship complicated.

“He would tell me, he’d say, ‘Deb I love her.’ But there was a lot going on,” Debra Billingsley said. “They were kind of living together, but kind of estranged at the same time.”

Johnson and William Williams had two children together and William Williams is the father of one other child, according to The Plain Dealer. Cleveland police spokesman Jennifer Ciacca refused Tuesday to comment on who is caring for their children.

“He loved the mother of his children,” said Billingsley, who also said the couple’s long relationship had been violent previously. “Just as with any relationship, they had their ups and downs.”

Authorities who tracked Johnson suspected she was headed to Maryland, where she has relatives, said U.S. Marshal Pete Elliott of the Cleveland office.

She was alone in a vehicle in western Pennsylvania when she shot herself as troopers approached her at about 10 a.m. ET Tuesday along Interstate 376 in Brighton Township, about 40 miles northwest of Pittsburgh, state police said. Troopers identified her based on an alert issued for the vehicle.

An autopsy is expected to be performed on Johnson’s body after her organs are harvested.

A medical examiner in Ohio determined that Williams died of a gunshot wound to the head with skull and brain injuries.

Contributing: Hilary Golson, WKYC-TV, Cleveland


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