PASADENA — Detectives Tuesday arrested a man and woman in connection with a 1997 cold case slaying in Altadena believed to have stemmed from a dispute over CDs.
Blood gang member Darryl Lamont Johnson, also known as Darryl Callum, 38, of Pasadena, was once linked to the infamous 1993 Halloween Homicides, Detective Michael Rodriguez of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau Cold Case Unit said.
In addition to murder, Johnson, affiliated with the Pasadena Denver Lanes gang, was also accused of the special allegations of personal use of a firearm and that the crime was gang-related.
Also arrested Tuesday on suspicion of murder was Dominique Raquel Evans, 41, of
Darryl Lamont Johnson, 38, of Pasadena and Dominique Evans, 41, of Pasadena were arrested Tuesday, May 21, 2013, on suspicion of the June 21, 1997 shooting death of 18-year-old Johnis Jackson in his hometown of Altadena.
Pasadena. She was also described as a Blood gang affiliate.
The two are accused in the 1997 shooting death of Johnis Jackson, 18, of Altadena at Fair Oaks Avenue and Harriet Street, the detective said.
“After all these years, this is something that I wanted. I wanted that closure,” said Vivian Knox, mother of Jackson.
Johnson was also once expected to testify as a witness, but ultimately refused, in the case of the fatal 1993 Halloween shooting that left three boys dead.
Investigators Rodriguez and Gary Sica described Jackson’s 1997 slaying as senseless and cowardly.
“We believe that the murder all stemmed from a disagreement regarding some possible stolen CDs,” Rodriguez said.
Johnson and Evans were arrested hours after detectives secured charges against the suspects and obtained a warrant for their arrests, Rodriguez said. A scheduled arraignment Wednesday in Pasadena Superior Court was postponed until May 28, court officials said.
Johnson and Evans were boyfriend and girlfriend at the time of the early morning June 21, 1997, slaying of Johnis Jackson at Fair Oaks Avenue and Harriet Street, the detective said. Their current relationship is unclear, though they have children together.
Jackson was a member of a Crips gang in Altadena, investigators said.
After attending a party, he was congregating with some other gang affiliates at Loma Alta park in Altadena, Rodriguez said. An argument broke out between one of Johnson’s gang affiliates and a woman at the park, who detectives identified Wednesday as Evans.
Evans accused Jackson’s gang-affiliate of stealing CDs, and the man slapped her, Rodriguez said.
After making threats, Evans left the park, he said. She was accompanied by several other women.
Jackson tried to calm the situation, and even offered to buy the angry woman new CDS to replace the ones she claimed were missing, Rodriguez said.
But less than half an hour later, Jackson was shot to death at Fair Oaks Avenue and Harriet Street as he was walking to his car with another young man, officials said.
Though investigators had long had leads in the case, they were not previously able to obtain a criminal filing, Rodriguez said.
As the investigation has continued through the years, “We had several people come forward,” he said.
New information, “coupled with the statements that witnesses gave us years ago,” assisted detectives in securing the charges Tuesday, Rodriguez said. He declined to comment on the specifics of new information received by investigators.
“(Past) accounts of the incident implicating both Evans and (Johnson) were corroborated. ”
Following more than 15 years of investigation, detectives Tuesday secured charges against Johnson and Evans and obtained warrants for their arrests, Rodriguez said. They were taken into custody later in the day during separate traffic stops in Pasadena.
Evangelina Young of Los Angeles, who said she’s known Evans for 25 years, disputed sheriff’s investigators assertion that she was involved with gangs, and said she did not believe Evans was involved with the fatal shooting. ”
She’s not gang member, and not affiliated,” Young said. “She would never be a part of somebody murdering somebody.”
Evans was a community-oriented and deeply religious woman, the friend added.
She would never get wrapped up in something like that,” Young said. “She’s not that person. It’s just not who she is.”
Young said she was less familiar with Johnson, though she was acquainted with him through Evans.
“He’s very quiet,” she said. “He’s a businessman. He’s a smart guy. He’s always been there for his family. That’s all I know.”
Long before he allegedly shot and killed Jackson in 1997, Johnson played a significant role in one of Pasadena’s most notorious homicide cases: the fatal shooting of two 14-year-old boys and a 13-year-old boy in the 500 block of North Wilson Avenue on Halloween night in 1993.
Johnson implicated Aurelius Duane Bailey in the Halloween slayings before a grand jury and in interviews with Pasadena police detectives, however those statements were not admissible as evidence in court.
Johnson was later arrested in September of 2002 while driving a stolen truck in Duarte with Aurelius Duane Bailey, who was sentenced to five years of probation after pleading no contest to three counts of voluntary manslaughter and five counts of attempted murder for his role in the Halloween slayings.
The Halloween homicide, along with Jackson’s slaying and other violent incidents of the 1990s, helped spur the formation of the federally funded Community Law Enforcement and Recovery program, known as CLEAR, to combat gang violence in the Pasadena and Altadena areas.
Johnson was ultimately sentenced to six months in jail and five years of probation after pleading no contest to the truck theft. Bailey received a six year prison sentence due to his previous criminal record.
According to county booking records, Johnson was being held in lieu of $2 million bail, while Evans was being held in lieu of $1.5 million.
PHOTOS of Darryl Jackson and Dominique Evans courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.