MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

January 2, 2013

Man held in slaying freed; case dropped

Insufficient evidence cited in court papers

By Wendy Burton
Phoenix Staff Writer

— A Muskogee man charged in Tulsa as an accessory to first-degree murder was released about 10 p.m. Monday.

John Jamel Thompson, 21, had been accused of lying to investigators when he was questioned about the shooting death of Bryshell Downing on March 27, 2011, in Tulsa.

The charge against Thompson was dismissed Monday because of insufficient evidence against him, according to court documents.

Downing, 20, was killed when three males in a gold-colored car drove up to the vehicle he was in about 5 a.m. that day, and one of the males began shooting at the vehicle. Downing was shot in the head.

C.C. Johnson, 23, also of Muskogee, opened fire from the gold-colored car on the vehicle Downing was in near 17th Street and Garnett Road in Tulsa.

Two other women and a small child also were in Downing’s vehicle.

Downing died at a Tulsa hospital. No one else in the vehicle was injured.

Johnson was found guilty in June of first-degree murder and three counts of shooting with intent to kill. He was sentenced to life without parole for the murder and three consecutive 50-year sentences for the shooting counts.

A third Muskogee man, Demarco Page, also is charged with first-degree murder and three counts of shooting with intent to kill in the case.

However, his trial, which was set to begin Jan. 7, won’t begin until Feb. 19.

Page, 20, is accused of being the driver of the gold-colored car.

He is in the David L. Moss Criminal Justice Center in Tulsa without bond on the murder charge and on $75,000 on each of the other three counts.

Several days after Downing’s murder, Page was found by Muskogee police and Tulsa investigators when they served a warrant in the 900 block of Elgin Street of Muskogee.

He was sitting in the gold-colored car allegedly used in the shooting.

Reach Wendy Burton at (918) 684-2926 or wburton@muskogeephoenix.com.