WSAZ | Charleston, West Virginia | News

Charges Dropped Against Suspect in Teen's Murder

By: WSAZ News Staff Email
By: WSAZ News Staff Email

UPDATE 8/20/12 @ 2:38 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Charges against a man from Charleston accused of killing a teenager have been dropped.

Police say Marcus Wesley planned the murder of Chase Miller back in 2007.

Wesley was charged with first-degree murder in the case. Prosecutors say those charges were dropped because the main witness in the case recently died and they didn't have enough evidence to get a conviction.

Michael Johnson pleaded guilty to being the actual gunman in the case.

Miller was killed just days before his 18th birthday.



UPDATE 2/24/12 @ 5:38 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Almost five years after a teenager was shot and killed on Charleston's East End, the man accused of pulling the trigger is behind bars -- admitting he did it.

If he were still alive, Chase Miller would have been almost 23. Instead, his life was cut short. Just days before his 18th birthday, he was shot along Lewis Street in Charleston.

Prosecutors say some sort of conflict between Miller, Marcus Wesley and Michael Johnson prompted that fatal night.

Threats of more violence kept witnesses from coming forward for years.

Michael Johnson on Friday pleaded guilty to pulling the trigger and shooting Miller.

"I want to apologize to Mr. Miller's family. I'm sorry. I apologize for my involvement," Johnson said.

Finally coming face to face with her son's killer, Betty Justice had a few things to say.

“Mr. Johnson, we appreciate your willingness to admit that you're a murderer and that that term will follow you all your life," Justice said.

Marcus Wesley’s fate is still not clear. Wesley is said to have been on the phone with Johnson, telling him what to do.

"We hope you use your sentence to better yourself that you will pray and ask for forgiveness. Chase's father and I cannot forgive you. Only God can forgive you. We hope that he takes care of you as you serve out your sentence," Justice said.

Johnson will spend 10 years in a state penitentiary.

Marcus Wesley’s trial is set to begin at 9:30 a.m. Monday.



UPDATE 2/24/12 @ 11:50 a.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- One of the two suspects charged in a 2007 murder case in Charleston will spend the next 10 years in prison.

Michael Johnson pleaded guilty Friday to second-degree murder in the death of Chase Miller.

Prosecutors say Johnson shot and killed Chase Miller back in January 2007 along Lewis Street on Charleston's east end.

During the plea hearing Friday, Johnson apologized to Chase's family for what he did.

Marcus Wesley is also charged in the crime. Prosecutors say he's accused of ordering the murder.

Johnson and Wesley weren't indicted until last year. Prosecutors say this case could have moved forward years ago, but key witnesses backed out because they were afraid to testify.

During the hearing Friday, the judge sentenced Johnson to 10 years in prison.

Wesley is scheduled to go on trial on Monday.


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