AP

DA drops plans to seek death penalty in theater shooting

Oct 16, 2022, 8:19 AM | Updated: 8:54 am

YORK, Pa. (AP) — Prosecutors have dropped plans to seek the death penalty against a man accused of killing a man and wounding a woman when he opened fire inside a movie theater in Pennsylvania almost three years ago.

Anu-Malik Johnson, 23, is charged with first- and third-degree murder, aggravated assault, reckless endangering and related offenses in the December 2019 shooting of 22-year-old Andre White Jr. at Regal Cinemas 13 in West Manchester Township.

York County prosecutors told the court they planned to pursue capital punishment if he was convicted of first-degree murder. Two years ago, a judge declined to bar them from doing so, rejecting defense arguments alleging a lack of evidence and citing the defendant’s age.

The York Dispatch, however, reports that the district attorney’s office asked last week to withdraw its intent to seek the death penalty, citing a mitigation report submitted by the defense as well as “relevant case law and applicable jury instructions.”

Defense attorney Jonathan White hailed the decision, saying he had “hoped and believed” prosecutors would drop plans to seek capital punishment. “I believe they made the right decision,” he said while declining to talk about the contents of the mitigation report.

Kyle King, spokesperson for the district attorney’s office, declined comment, saying his office doesn’t comment on “pending matters.” he said.

Witnesses to the shooting told investigators that White had briefly spoken with Johnson and another man as he headed to his seat, but Johnson later approached the seated victim and opened fire, authorities said. Police said the victim was hit five times.

Authorities allege that the shooter continued to fire as he ran for the exit with his companion. Two bullets struck a woman seated in a row in front of the shooting victim, one injuring her shoulder and the other grazing her cheek, police said. Several other people were later charged with hindering apprehension and other counts in the case.

No trial date for Johnson has been set. White said he believed the case could go before a jury by March.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

UoA student convicted of first-degree murder after killing professor...

Associated Press

Former Arizona grad student convicted of first-degree murder in 2022 shooting of professor

A former University of Arizona grad student was convicted of first-degree murder after fatally shooting a professor on campus two years ago.

43 minutes ago

Rudy Giuliani bankruptcy filing defamation lawsuit...

Associated Press

Ex-NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Arizona’s Kelli Ward plead not guilty in fake elector case

Giuliani appeared remotely for the arraignment that was held in a Phoenix courtroom. His trial will take place in October.

7 hours ago

President Joe Biden gestures after speaking to graduating students at the Morehouse College commenc...

Associated Press

Biden tells Morehouse graduates that scenes in Gaza from the Israel-Hamas war break his heart, too

Joe Biden on Sunday offered his most direct recognition of U.S. students' anguish over the Israel-Hamas war.

2 days ago

Rudy Giuliani...

Associated Press

Rudy Giuliani is the final defendant served indictment in Arizona fake elector case

Rudy Giuliani has been served an indictment in Arizona's fake elector case for his role in an attempt to overturn the 2020 election.

3 days ago

Houston storms cause widespread damage on Friday...

Associated Press

Some in Houston facing no power for weeks after storms cause widespread damage, killing at least 4

Houston storms cause widespread damage on Friday, May 17. Thunderstorms hit the southeastern part of Texas, killing at least four people.

4 days ago

Follow @ktar923...

Sponsored Content by Sanderson Ford

3 new rides for 3 new road trips in Arizona

It's time for the Sanderson Ford Memorial Day sale with the Mighty Fine 69 Anniversary, as Sanderson Ford turned 69 years old in May.

Sponsored Articles

...

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Beat the heat, ensure your AC unit is summer-ready

With temperatures starting to rise across the Valley, now is a great time to be sure your AC unit is ready to withstand the sweltering summer heat.

...

Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.

...

COLLINS COMFORT MASTERS

Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.

DA drops plans to seek death penalty in theater shooting