|For Immediate Release
Case # 07CF2849
October 6, 2009
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Public Affairs Counsel
WHITE SUPREMACIST GANG MEMBER FACES DEATH PENALTY TRIAL FOR 2002 CONSPIRACY
MURDER OF FELLOW GANG MEMBER WHO
DIVULGED GANG SECRETS ON TV
*Two co-defendants have been convicted in this case; one was sentenced to the death penalty
SANTA ANA – A white supremacist gang member faces trial tomorrow for his involvement in the 2002 gang conspiracy murder of a fellow gang member who divulged gang secrets on television. Billy Jo Johnson, 46, is charged with one felony count each of murder, conspiracy to commit murder, accessory after the fact, and sentencing enhancements for criminal street gang activity, the vicarious discharge of a firearm by a gang member causing death, murder by lying in wait, and murder committed for a criminal street gang purpose. Johnson also has three prior strike convictions for a 1983 residential burglary, a 1989 robbery, and for beating an inmate in prison in 1995. He is currently serving a sentence of 45 years to life in prison following a 2006 conviction for a 2004 gang related murder. Johnson was charged for this murder on Aug. 23, 2007, after the conviction of two previously charged co-defendants.
The District Attorney is seeking the death penalty in this case. Opening statements are scheduled to begin tomorrow, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2009, at 9:00 a.m. in Department
C-35, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.
Co-defendants Michael Allen Lamb, 35, and Jacob Anthony Rump, 33, (Case #03CF0441) were convicted by a jury on July 10, 2007, of murder, conspiracy to commit murder, committing murder for the benefit of a criminal street gang, two counts of possession of a firearm by a violent felon, two counts of possession of a firearm by a felon, carrying a firearm as an active gang member, two counts of street terrorism, and the attempted murder of a peace officer. The jury also found true the special circumstance of murder committed for the benefit of a criminal street gang and sentencing enhancements for criminal street gang activity, the personal discharge of a firearm causing death, and vicarious discharge of a firearm causing death as a gang member. On Oct. 5, 2007, Rump was sentenced to the maximum sentence as sought by the People, life without the possibility of parole. On June 11, 2008, a jury recommended that Lamb receive the death penalty. Lamb was sentenced Aug. 22, 2008, to death.
The Murder of Scott Miller
In February of 2001, Fox 11 News profiled a violent white supremacist criminal street gang, focusing on a pending criminal case against known leaders of the gang who were on trial for conspiracy to commit murder. Scott Miller, a founding member of the gang, was featured in the broadcast, offending fellow gang members who felt he was airing “dirty laundry.” While Miller’s voice and face were disguised, his tattoos were visible and made it possible for fellow gang members to identify him.
On March 8, 2002, Miller was at a party in Costa Mesa with other members of his white supremacist gang. Johnson is accused of luring Miller from the party under the guise of purchasing drugs in Anaheim with the understanding that they would return to the party later.