August 15th, 2010
05:36 AM ET

Wrong man arrested in Buffalo shootings, police say

[Updated at 4:40 p.m.] Authorities have dropped charges against a 25-year-old man arrested in connection with the shooting deaths of four people outside a restaurant in downtown Buffalo, New York, police said.

Keith Johnson remains in jail on unrelated parole violations, Buffalo police spokesman Mike DeGeorge said.

The shooting Saturday also injured four others outside the City Grill in downtown Buffalo.

Earlier, Erie County District Attorney Frank Sedita told CNN affiliate WGRZ-TV that photographic evidence collected by Buffalo police late Saturday night had led them to believe the wrong person might have been in custody.

The new evidence led to doubts about Johnson's arrest, Sedita told the affiliate.


[Posted at 5:36 a.m.] Authorities may have arrested the wrong suspect in a shooting that killed four people in Buffalo, New York, according to CNN affiliate WGRZ.

Charges against Keith Johnson, 25, could be dropped, the Erie County district attorney told the affiliate.

Johnson was arrested Saturday and charged with four counts of second-degree murder in connection with the shooting at City Grill restaurant. Four other people were wounded in the shooting.

Sedita told WGRZ photographic evidence collected by Buffalo police late Saturday has led them to believe the wrong person may be in custody.

Sedita said new information came to light following Saturday's press conferences and requests that witnesses come forward.

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Filed under: Crime • New York
soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. kurt

    What could be worse than wrongful imprisonment?

    August 15, 2010 at 5:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Lance

      Wrongful execution.

      August 15, 2010 at 9:24 am | Report abuse |
  2. John Baker

    This is crazy. So that means the real culprit is out there? Come on! This is of course why we should never jump to conclusions, the police have a horrible way of just ignoring all else, once they think they have their man. The positive thing is, if this is true, they figured it out EARLY instead of 10 years later. Last thing we need is another wrongly accused man being freed on DNA evidence years later....and then wondering what the real rapist/murderer has been up to.

    August 15, 2010 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |
  3. SOF

    Hey Kurt, try wrongful execution.. I think that would answer your question....

    August 15, 2010 at 6:08 am | Report abuse |
  4. reimann

    This whole incident has been reported with such scant details everywhere. At least in this case they quickly found out they have the wrong man instead of pinning the whole thing on any convenient suspect. Hope to read more details soon.

    August 15, 2010 at 6:32 am | Report abuse |
  5. Fingers

    Liberal democrats are always calling conservatives "gun nuts". Well, they are the real gun nuts. They think it's OK to pull out their illegal guns and start shooting anytime they've been "dissed".
    The DNC should be forced to hand over half its money to LE for cleaning up the mess you violent, intolerant liberals leave behind everywhere you go.

    August 15, 2010 at 6:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Amazed

      You are an idiot! It always amazes me when people (who have no clue) try to turn things into a liberal vs. conservative issue when it has nothing remotely to do with either party. no one condones the behavior of the murderer, who is most likely still a free man. Fingers... you need to pull your head out of you hind end and get a life, or a hobby or even just some friends might help.

      August 15, 2010 at 7:18 am | Report abuse |
    • Dawny

      I left you a comment on the main board but didn't reply to you, so read it if you like.

      August 15, 2010 at 8:05 am | Report abuse |
    • Fingers

      Sure. And when ever something like this happens somebody like you always has to say "Let's don't politicize this". "There racism on both sides of the isle".
      Blah blah blah.

      August 15, 2010 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Blessed

      Dear Fingers,

      This report has nothing to do with those Liberal Democrats. This is about a suspect that might have been wrongly accused of murder. If you want to bash the Liberal Democrats, sign up to give your unwanted opinions on the politics page.

      August 15, 2010 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dawny

      Haha, I thought this was real. You are totally a 7 yr old playing on the computer. No educated person says these things.

      August 15, 2010 at 6:50 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Dawny

    Fingers, which news report did you hear or read where they announced the suspect's (wrong suspect at that) party affiliation. I must have missed it. Or are you the person who bases his assumption about party offiliation on race or part of town?

    You are fighting the wrong battle. People died, real people, real lives not "messes to clean up," but souls rather who had families and people to love. This is also about a man wrongfully accused who could have possibly sat in jail for life or been executed; which happens all the time in this country.

    You just skipped over everything of value in this article to plug an issue that is more than a silly argument when compared to the tragedy. I won't even get into the racially charged "dissed" implications. The RNC can't save you and neither will the DNC. Wise up and be about something bigger than yourself and using these forums to spew ignorance.

    August 15, 2010 at 8:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Fingers

      Dawny, you can play stupid if you want to. You liberal jellyfish are very good at that. We all know what kind of loser the killer is. He's black, probably already has a jailhouse muslim name, and probably hopes to land a job with the left wing NBPP as a democratic poll watcher.
      Take your ignorant liberal drivel and go sit under a rainbow and write a poem.

      August 15, 2010 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  7. Caileagh

    This clearly demonstrates a huge problem with the media. You've now demonized an innocent person. You do this everyday. Sensationalize the arrest of an innocent. But you'll barely give e print or air space to declare his innocence or clear his name. I irresponsible reporting

    August 15, 2010 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom j

      I couldn't agree more. Innocent until proven guilty is a lie. In this country the media destroys your life and reputation before you even step foot in a court room.

      August 15, 2010 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
    • DvS

      "Innocent until proven guilty" has always been a lie. It's "guilty until proven innocent".

      August 15, 2010 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
  8. Mr. Davidson

    It's very odd that there have been no photos of any of the persons involved in this incident,is it a big secret.

    August 15, 2010 at 9:57 am | Report abuse |
  9. thorrsman

    Always remember this when talking about a suspect. The police do make mistakes. Keep in mind also that this chap may be the RIGHT guy. The cops will keep looking, it's what they do. Until they get the RIGHT guy, this fellow is not entirely off the hook without overwhelming evidence that he is the WRONG guy.

    August 15, 2010 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Fingers

      The poor suspect, at the ripe old age of 25, has already been convicted of a shooting and only served five years before getting out, and only got two more years for two parole violations. He was just released from prison again a couple of weeks ago. Maybe he didn't commit this crime, but he shouldn't be walking the streets either.

      August 15, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  10. foxglove

    Truly a half half ass investigation trying to get a quick publicity.

    August 15, 2010 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  11. claudia

    This shouldn't be no surprise at what New York police did. They just grabbed the first black guy and said okay hes it. Please! these cops are notorious for racial profiling anyway. It's terribel to be innocent and get thrown into jail wrongly. The cops of NYC is so anxious to solve their cases to quickly. Anybody will do whether they black or white.

    August 15, 2010 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Den

    I'm glad the police have eliminated at least one person. That narrows it down a bit, eh?

    August 16, 2010 at 2:30 am | Report abuse |