Indianapolis—An attorney representing Brandon Johnson says the teenager at the center of a controversial police misconduct case last year will be charged as an adult for gun and gang violations following his arrest at his east side home Wednesday night.
Johnson and his brothers, Miketavious Jackson and Terrell Jackson, were arrested by 14 IMPD officers at the family home on Mountain Stream Way. Officers, including gang unit detectives, made forced entry into the home to arrest Terrell, 18, on an outstanding traffic warrant. More than a dozen officers to serve such an arrest and search warrant is unusual but, given the intelligence that Terrell had been involved in other firearms investigations since his release from prison last September and the department’s history with Brandon, IMPD carried out the investigation with a larger group of officers.
Steve Wagner, Brandon’s attorney, in an exclusive interview with Fox59 News questioned what he called the “excessive” number of officers involved and claimed the Johnson family has been a victim of police harassment recently.
In November, Officer Jerry Piland was cleared of allegations that he beat Brandon during an arrest last spring. Johnson suffered severe facial bruising. The police merit board determined there wasn’t enough evidence to find that Piland, among several officers on the scene, inflicted the injuries.
Wagner said that Brandon was arrested for having a t-shirt that portrayed the violent death of a friend several months ago and for possession of a gun that belonged to his mother and was discovered in her purse in another bedroom of the townhouse.
While Johnson is being housed at the Marion County Juvenile facility, spokeswoman for the Marion County Prosecutor's Office Lara Beck said no decision has been made on whether to waive the teen into the adult criminal justice system.
The Jacksons were arrested on drug and criminal gang activity charges. Johnson was arrested on gang and firearms charges.
"I want to know how my client is in jail facing firearms charges," said attorney Steve Wagner. "When it was his mother who had the only weapon in the house and it was properly registered."
"This follows months of activity where police drive by their house very slowly and when you put all this together there's a clear pattern of harassment."