Man charged with capital murder in police officer's death has local ties

Nick O'Rear, who was shot and killed this past week in the line of duty, had recently been certified as the K-9 handler for the Kimberly Police Department.

WALKER COUNTY   - The pursuit of a suspect vehicle, containing a man with criminal ties to several areas including Winston County, ended in the fatal shooting of Kimberly Police Officer Nick O’Rear--the first Alabama law enforcement officer killed in the line of duty in 2020.
The shooting, which occurred during a pursuit on Interstate 65 south, resulted in multiple counts of capital murder against Preston Chyenne Johnson, 37, of Addison.
Charges include capital murder of a law enforcement officer, two counts of capital murder drive by shooting and murder, authorities said.
As of press time, Johnson is being held without bond in the Jefferson County Jail.
O’Rear was pronounced dead at UAB Hospital at 1:15 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 5.
Later that morning, around 5:39 a.m.,  Johnson was booked into the Jefferson County Jail on capital murder charges.

Officer O'Rear's Celebration of Life will be Monday, Feb. 10, at Ridout's Gardendale Chapel, with family visitation from 9-10 a.m., public visitation from 10 a.m. until noon and law enforcement visitation from noon until 1 p.m. A graveside service will be held at 3:30 p.m. at Jefferson Memorial Cemetery in Trussville.

Watch Wednesday's edition of the Northwest Alabamian for the full story.


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