In 2009, Johnson took on the defense of Kory White, a young engineer and University of Colorado graduate who was charged with attempted murder in connection with a fight that took place after the annual football game between his alma mater and interstate rival Colorado State University.
The case was reported extensively in the Boulder print media. The Colorado Daily carried an article on September 22, 2009 entitled, “Attempted murder charge in Labor Day attack on University Hill.”
Initial media reports claimed that Kory White had entered the home of the victim and beaten him because White was jealous of the victim’s relationship with White’s girlfriend. A Boulder Daily Camera article on March 19, 2010: “Suspect in Boulder Labor Day fracas pleads not guilty” referred to investigative documents that pointed to jealously as a possible motive.
Mr. Johnson developed evidence reflecting that the victim – and not White – was the initial aggressor in the fight. Johnson retained his own experts who tested items seized from the crime scene that showed the presence of narcotics in the victim’s house.
Johnson pursed the defense that the alleged victim attacked White after he demanded that the police be called to aid the victim’s sister who was dangerously intoxicated. Throughout the case, Johnson challenged prosecutors’ claims that the victim was an innocent target of an unprovoked assault.
Johnson’s independent investigation prompted prosecutors to offer a reduced charge that secured a probationary sentence for his client. The intense sentencing hearing in the case was reported by the Boulder Daily Camera in an article on January 10, 2011 entitled, “Man in ’09 University Hill assault gets six month in jail.”