Trials for a Greenwood man, his mother and his girlfriend in connection with a 2018 shooting death have been postponed until next year.
Justin Johnson, who was 19 when the crime occurred, was charged with first-degree murder after the fatal shooting of 48-year-old Bryant Keith Ramsey in February 2018. Ramsey was shot on Broad Street and died of a gunshot wound to the head, Will Gnemi, a deputy Leflore County coroner, said at the time.
Mikayla Pitts, Johnson’s girlfriend, and Joyce Clark, Johnson’s mother, each were charged as an accessory after the fact.
At the time, both Pitts and Clark lived at the same address as Johnson. During an investigation, Clark was arrested at their home on Bowie Lane, while Pitts and Johnson were picked up in a trailer home in Carroll County by the Carroll County Sheriff’s Department. A .22-caliber handgun believed to have been used in the slaying was recovered at the trailer home.
“His mother and girlfriend aided in his escape,” former Greenwood Police Chief Ray Moore alleged in 2018. “They were there when the actual shooting took place, and the mother carried him and his girlfriend to the trailer house and hid them out.”
According to District Attorney Dewayne Richardson, these trials, which were scheduled for this past week, are now set to come up in Circuit Court on Jan. 5.
Johnson will be tried separately from Pitts and Clark.
All three of the attorneys involved said they requested a continuance to examine the case further.
Johnson’s attorney, Wallie Stuckey, said Johnson is awaiting trial in the Leflore County Jail, where he has been for the last two years.
Pitts’ attorney, James Littleton, said he does not comment on ongoing cases but did say that his client was not held in custody and was “bonded out some time ago.”
Likewise, Clark’s lawyer, Tucker Gore, said he would not comment on the case, saying it was still in the discovery phase. During discovery, prosecutors and defense attorneys exchange information about witnesses and evidence. This allows both sides to know what evidence might be presented at the trial before it starts.
Clark bonded out in March 2018 but was returned to jail in September for missing her arraignment.
At the end of October, she posted bail again and was released.