Awesome mom solves son's murder 8 years after police gave up (VIDEO)
A Florida mom has solved her son's murder after trying to convince police for years that his death was not an accident. Judy Weaver, the mother of Ronald Johnson who died in 2005, did not believe the evidence in her son's death added up and pursued the truth for years, until she eventually got the case reopened--a suspect has now been charged with second-degree murder.
Read more ¿Qué más?: Halloween prank proves deadly for Latino teen trying to scare his sister
At the time of Johnson's death, investigators believed eyewitness accounts that claimed Johnson had been doing tricks on his bicycle when he fell and hit his head on a curb, causing him to go into a coma. Johnson was put on life support, but only survived another nine days. But the evidence didn't add up for Weaver--she noticed that there were no scratches or damage at all to her son's bike and that there wasn't even a curb that he could have hit in the area where the incident occurred.
The discrepancies prompted Weaver to investigate further. While Johnson was still on life support, Weaver and her daughter Deborah Murray told people that he was doing fine and had been revealing details about the incident, when in fact, he was not even conscious. They did so in the hopes that witnesses would come forward with the truth. Their actions did in fact have results--the man who was eventually arrested for Johnson's murder gave a partial confession. Jason Gailey told Weaver that he had accidentally hit her son with his fist and ran when he believed Johnson was getting back up to retaliate. Weaver went to the police with this information, but they were not convinced. The death went down as accidental and the case was closed.
Years later, Weaver met a detective in the restaurant where she worked and told him her story. And as it turned out, Lt. Paul "Spike" Hopkins had actually worked on the case. Weaver's convictions prompted him to reopen the case. It was then determined that some witnesses had changed their stories and some were now willing to reveal the truth. Johnson had tried to stop a fight between Gailey and another man and was in turn hit in the head with a handgun, fell to the ground and hit the concrete. Gailey is currently in custody and has been charged with second-degree murder. He has yet to be arraigned and has not entered a plea.
"I knew if we got the right people, eventually it would be solved. It's getting the right person and eight years later, we got that right person," Weaver told ABC News. "I never gave up."
This mother's love for her son and her vigilance in seeking justice for his life is so very inspiring. I hope that she and the rest of Johnson's surviving family members can be at peace now, and that her story will serve even if in the smallest way to discourage such unnecessary violence.
Image via WFTV/ABCnews.com