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Investigation continues into suspicious death of Black sophomore in San Jose State frat house

February 9, 2009

by Joan Moss

Gregory Johnson Jr. would have turned 21 on March 1. “He was talking about his 21st birthday,” his mother, Rev. Denise Johnson of Clearlake, told the Lake County Record-Bee. “He was making plans to live, not to die.” She questions the suicide theory posed by law enforcement officials, remembering her son as a positive, cheerful young man.

These pictures, taken at the mortuary prior to the application of cosmetics, show no bruising on Gregory Johnson’s neck.
These pictures, taken at the mortuary prior to the application of cosmetics, show no bruising on Gregory Johnson’s neck.
“He had everything in front of him. He had a year and a half to go before he graduated and already had his AA in political science. He was well loved by his friends and peers and had intentions of running for fraternity president,” Rev. Johnson said, explaining why she believes he did not commit suicide. A certified personal trainer at Bali’s Fitness Gym in San Jose, Gregory was considering an internship with the Golden State Warriors and was in good academic standing.

Gregory was the only African American in the Sigma Chi Fraternity at San Jose State University.

Gregory Johnson Jr. and his mother, Rev. Denise Johnson, enjoy happier days together last August.
Gregory Johnson Jr. and his mother, Rev. Denise Johnson, celebrate his birthday with the family last Aug. 4 in a luxury suite at the A's game - his birthday gift. - Photo: Sekou Gilchrist, Gregory's big brother
Dana Overstreet, supervisor of the Homicide Division of the Santa Clara District Attorney’s Office, said Thursday, Feb. 5, that police are still investigating the suspicious death of Gregory Johnson Jr., a sophomore at San Jose State University, who was found dead in the basement of the Sigma Chi fraternity house Nov. 22, 2008.

Capt. Forester of the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office, who manages the medical examiner’s and coroner’s office, said Feb. 5 that Gregory’s autopsy has been completed, and it states that he died of a ligature hanging Nov. 22. His mother says that his death was listed on the campus police website as a body found in the Sigma Chi fraternity house on the San Jose State campus.

Capt. Forester said the case is closed in his office but that the district attorney has requested a copy of the autopsy and all reports connected with the death. “The autopsy and the investigative reports are public record, and any member of the public can pay for a copy,” said Forester.

Forester said Feb. 9 that the manner of Gregory’s death was suicide. But not all the authorities agree. Rev. Johnson, Gregory’s mother, reported Thursday, Jan. 29, that Eric Wong, investigator for the San Jose State University campus police, said the cause of death is “inconclusive.”

Rev. Johnson learned later the same day that Dana Overstreet, the DA’s homicide supervisor, said all documents and reports concerning Gregory Johnson’s death were turned over to her in December of 2008. Then Overstreet retracted her statement in a telephone interview Jan. 29, stating that her department has some papers and documents but not all of them, and she is waiting for the autopsy and toxicology report before making any public statement. Overstreet termed the tragedy a “suspicious death.”

Overstreet confirmed Friday. Feb. 5, that the medical examiner’s responsibility to determine the cause of death is closed and his findings are public record, but the police investigation into the circumstances surrounding Gregory’s death remains open and ongoing.

According to Rev. Johnson, San Jose police said the frat house is part of the university and not under their jurisdiction. Although San Jose State University officials said the frat house is not under the university’s jurisdiction, campus police are investigating.

Gregory’s older brother, Sekou Gilchrist, said he was told by campus police shortly after Gregory’s death that the investigation would be completed in a few days because the case was “cut and dry.” “Those were the words he used,” Gilchrist said.

“I think the investigation was poorly handled,” Rev. Johnson told the Lake County Record-Bee. “I feel (Gregory) wasn’t treated as a human being, let alone a student who was achieving, a popular student who was well on his way to graduation.

“I feel that this has been swept under the rug. I feel that the suspects were treated like witnesses instead of suspects in a hate crime.”

Countered campus police Sgt. Michael Santos: “Ever since this investigation began, there were numerous fraternity members that were interviewed and they will continue to be interviewed until we are satisfied that there is nothing more we can get from them.”

Santos added: “I really feel for the family. As much as possible, we are doing what we can for them. But the information the family is giving us isn’t leading to anything that would lead us to believe that this was foul play.”

On Feb. 9, Gregory's parents, Denise and Gregory Johnson Sr., told the story of his suspicious death to a full house at a Black History Month event sponsored by the San Francisco State University Black Student Union. The audience was deeply moved. - Photo: Francisco Da Costa
On Feb. 9, Gregory's parents, Denise and Gregory Johnson Sr., told the story of his suspicious death to a full house at a Black History Month event sponsored by the San Francisco State University Black Student Union. The audience was deeply moved. - Photo: Francisco Da Costa
When Gregory’s parents went to the fraternity house the day after his death, they told the Record-Bee, the scene had already been cleaned and disinfected. They were told that Gregory was found hanging from the basement ceiling with his legs straight out and his buttocks inches from the floor.

“There is not a mark on my child and there is no way he hung there while he was alive,” said Rev. Johnson. “Gregory was 6 feet 2, 197 pounds. They showed me the ceiling where he was found and it wasn’t even a good 6 feet high. His father had to duck down inside the room.”

Rev. Johnson questions the cause and manner of death shown on Gregory’s death certificate – suicide by ligature hanging – and has called Cindy, the coroner’s investigator, every day for the results of the autopsy report.

“They ripped my heart out,” remembers Denise. “They told me to accept it” (the suicide). Rev. Johnson and her relatives call everyone they can think of every day and get different messages from the campus police, the coroner’s office and other officials they call.

On Wednesday, Feb. 4, a relative of the Johnsons learned from Claudine, who works nights at the Santa Clara Coroner’s Office, that the autopsy has been completed, but the computer screen is grayed out. However, Cindy, who works at the coroner’s office at the front desk, keeps telling Rev. Johnson that the autopsy report is not ready and asking her to stop calling every day.

Gregory was a sophomore at San Jose State earning As in his classes, studying sports medicine and living at Sigma Chi Fraternity on campus, according to Rev. Johnson. He was also a licensed, ordained Baptist minister.

Rev. Johnson remembers Gregory telling her his clothes were disappearing – stolen – and that fights would break out at the frat house after parties. Campus police computerized crime reports list two batteries, one robbery and fights every week at the Sigma Chi fraternity house during October and November of 2008, according to Rev. Johnson.

When Rev. Johnson went to the frat house to take care of her son’s body and arrange for a funeral, all of her son’s jewelry was missing, including his class ring from Lower Lake High School, where he graduated with honors.

Rev. Johnson said her son’s neck was broken, but she said she saw no marks on it from hanging. Johnson and her older son took pictures of Gregory’s neck. Capt. Forester stated Feb. 9 that he was prohibited by state law from sending out the pictures of Gregory’s neck taken by the medical examiner.

One of Gregory’s friends had moved out of the Sigma Chi fraternity house because of problems, according to Rev. Johnson. Gregory’s friends are afraid to talk. There is tension between the college newspaper and the campus police at times, according to a student journalist.

Gregory’s cell phone had been erased when his sister saw it on the floor of his frat room Nov. 23, when the family came to get what was left of his belongings at the Sigma Chi house. One voice message remained in the phone’s memory; it was recorded at 8:30 p.m. Nov. 22, according to his mother.

Gregory’s parents, Rev. Denise Johnson and Gregory Johnson Sr., think someone at the frat house erased all Gregory’s pictures and withheld the cell phone from the police until the phone was blank.

The extension cord Gregory is alleged to have hanged himself with is not included in the articles of evidence, according to Rev. Johnson. Could the cord have been withheld from the police because of DNA or fingerprints on the cord? Could someone other than Gregory have hanged his body after he was killed and his neck broken?

Members of Gregory’s church, Praises of Zion Baptist Church in Clearlake, agree with his mother that Gregory would never hang himself. “It’s just not in character with who he was,” stated Kevin Victorian.

Gregory’s high school teacher, Ann Nolasco, wrote a letter to the editor of the Record-Bee expressing hope that the truth will come out and lauding Gregory as “an extraordinary young man.” “He was the student body vice president, activities director, a drama student and the school’s athletic trainer,” she wrote. “Greg was a member of the Academic Decathlon Team and was the Lion’s Club regional finalist Speaker of the Year. He was also a member of the school’s wrestling team.

“Greg was very outgoing and loved being around people. He was known for giving the warmest hugs. He was loved by everyone. Greg was not just another student. Greg was a rare and exceptional, well-mannered and amiable individual.

“Greg had so much going for him. He was a successful student with a very bright future ahead of him.”

His teacher concluded: “We do not want his death to be overlooked. May this case remain open until more information is revealed that leads to the truth. We can only hope and pray that anyone who knows any information will come forward.

“Greg will be loved, remembered and deeply missed forever by all of his friends, family and our entire community.”

Rev. Johnson, Gregory’s mother, said she will continue to seek the truth concerning her son’s death until justice is won.

Joan Moss can be reached at joanmoss@att.net. The Bay View appreciates and acknowledges the intensive coverage of this story by Denise Rockenstein for the Lake County Record-Bee; she can be reached at (707) 994-6444, ext. 11, or drockenstein@clearlakeobserver.com. Bay View staff also contributed to this story, mainly through selected excerpts from Rockenstein’s work.

59 thoughts on “Investigation continues into suspicious death of Black sophomore in San Jose State frat house

  1. kimmAnn

    My prayers with the family of Gregory Johnson Jr. The does not sound right. Keep putting all the information out there cause someone with a conscience will speak up soon. The school knows more than what they are saying so continue seeking the truth concerning Gregory’s death.
    Again, my prayer are with the family.

    Reply
  2. Francisco Da Costa

    In the case of Oscar Grant the video and other testimony help rally thousands of fight for what is right. In the case of Gregory Johnson Jr. who just 20 years – we must fight to find out what really happened? Right now there are some killers out there – and we have so me “blood hounds” pursuing them.

    Reply
  3. Friend

    This is such a tradgedy for my dearest friend and family. We all know that Gregory did not kill himself. He had too much to live for. The truth will be known.

    Reply
  4. Seeking Justice

    Somebody knows something. Come forward. Even if it’s anonymously. Justice must be served. An innocent young aspiring man was not only taken from his family but from the world. A man with so much to offer. Such a positive role model for all young black men. Please don’t let this go unsolved.

    Reply
  5. The Cover Up

    San Jose State University is not an institute of “Higher Learning” rather an institute of “Cover Up”. Look up the statistics of death and crime, all of which little was ever detailed, especially hate crimes. Everyone who’s anyone has been informed to keep quiet when it comes to the “stolen” life of Gregory Johnson Jr. The President of San Jose State University John Whit “More Coverup” is doing his part to keep the truth under wraps too. Let’s all come together and bring out the real answers.

    Reply
  6. what up with this?

    someone should man up and tell the truth it is a shame and disgrace to the word university. keep quiet come on where is your sense of right and wrong san jose state should change their name to san jose chi cult. by the way whats up with the coroner are the medical examiner and investagator
    getting it on in the autopsy room or are they hallucinating or just blind. on body is safe in this county with this kind of coroner .

    Reply
  7. what up with this?

    by the way all you old schoolers doesnt this picture remind
    you of emitt till in 1965 ? differnt person same hate murder
    i guess nothing has really changed just the landscape and the date

    Reply
  8. what up with this?

    i hope and pray this murder is delt with swiftly how does this injustice happen in the land of the free and home of the brave?

    Reply
  9. His big cuz Ken

    God said “Prayers of the righteous availeth much” And by no means is his family in Chicago gonna let this go, the truth will prevail either by force or by someone’s conscious. But if we keep on fighting for the truth sooner or later it will come to the light. So please San Jose University don’t think that you can tell us anything and we will believe it and just go away those days are long gone. Everyone please continue to pray for my Aunt and her family.

    Reply
  10. Cousin Chanelle

    The Lord said, “To me belongeth vengeance, and recompence; their foot shall slide in due time: for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste”. This will be the sure fate of the murderers and anyone connected with it. I hope that this provides some comfort to my aunt and family, as it has me. However, the family will not rest completely until the truth is revealed. We will continue to seek the truth diligently because we value Greg’s life and feel that he deserves more than the deceit being given to us as an answer for his death.

    To the members of Sigma Chi Fraternity, San Jose State University, and Santa Clara County, I hope that someone who knows the truth will do the just thing and come forth soon.

    Thanks to SF Bay View for covering the story. Thank you to the law officials that continue to look for the truth. Continue to pray for my aunt and her family.

    -Chanelle

    Reply
  11. Dion Evans

    This is totally a threat to justice. Whoever heard of campus police conducting murder investigations or suicides? Where are his “Fraternity brothers?” Why are they not crying out for more information? This story creates so many questions for me!

    Reply
  12. liars in santa clara county

    how is it that the campus police are investigating something so serious? or is it not serious because he is
    black? arent a lot of the campus police student them selves?

    Reply
  13. deep south

    this type of denial was popular in the 1800s all the way to the sixtys i see hate and coverup is still alive and well witmore what do they call you massa whitmore?

    Reply
  14. honorable teachers?

    are’nt teachers bound by law . to report anything that concerns the welfare of their students ? oh i guess that doesnt include murder! no honor at sjsu !

    Reply
  15. why?

    why is it that black on black crime is so popular with the news media ? when injustice is not even looked at ! are’nt news papers suposed to investigate the real news ! kudos to the lake county record bee ! san francisco bayview ! and anyone else who asks who what where and why in cases of gross injustice president obama these cases are for you !

    Reply
  16. appalled

    i am so angry and disgusted at what has happened in the handeling of this case what kind of university doesnt fight earnestly to find murders on its campus do’nt they realize they create an atmosphere of mistrust and deceit when a lie is allowed abound amoungst teachers and students do they not know once people are allow allowed to murder and get away with it they live to murder again? thats why crime is rampant at sjsu.

    Reply
  17. shame

    its a shame when parents work to send children to school and when kids play by the rules and this happens i wouldnt send mine to san jose state unless i lived with them!

    Reply
  18. Sionah

    What really happened Nov 22, 2008 in the basement of Simga Chi frat house? I believe something went terrible wrong. A brotherhood for some all they ever knew is preventing them from breaking the silence. As stated on Sigma Chi’s website their core values are friendship, justice and learning. Gregory Jr known as Boobie to me touched so many lives in such a sort time the FRIENDSHIPS he cultivated at San Jose State and beyound will never be forgotten. Boobie’s mind was like a sponge he was eager to LEARN more and more each and everyday. He rose to the ocassion and looked life in the face daring it to teach him something new. Last but not least JUSTICE… I pray that Boobie’s Sigma Chi Brothers love the fraturnity and what it stands for as much as he did. Please help my family gain closer in the events surrounding his death. I know without a doubt being the man that Boobie was if he was prevy to any information that would easy the pain for a family he would step out on faith and make sure justice was served. To the brothers of Sigma Chi Gregory Jr Challenges you to see to it justice is served in his memory.

    Reply
  19. 1996 alumni of SJSU

    my prayers go out to the family and all of those who LOVED Gregory.

    As of SJSU alumni, I am saddened by this tragic event. A statue sits on campus as a sign of UNITY from a silent protest at the 1968 Summer Olympics. The protest was for the civil rights movement. Fast-forward 40 years later, how much has things changed?

    To the members of Sigma Chi and ALL fraternities and sororities, please step up and answer the call for this fallen human being. People talk, they always do. Keep your eyes and ears open and go to the family, media, and law enforcement with the important information that will bring closure to this tragedy.

    Reply
  20. Gwendolyn Johnson Cameron

    I always felt and knew in my heart that he did not do what they said he did to him self,and still to this day refuse to and will NEVER accept or believe that he did, my nephew had his whole life ahead of him and everything in it to live for,until it was taken from him.
    Love Always your aunts,uncles,neices,nephews of Los Angeles Ca., we will always LOVE YOU and MISS YOU
    Rev. Gregory M. Johnson Jr.
    Also HAPPY 21st BIRTHDAY coming soon March 1st, 2009

    Reply
  21. Aunt Maxine Johnson - Los Angeles, Ca.

    If it takes the rest of our lives we will get JUSTICE,his murder will not be IN VAIN. So remember those of you who know what happened to my nephew and will not come forward just remember this GOD KNOWS and SEES ALL so what you think you’ve done in THE DARK will ONE DAY come to THE LIGHT for ALL TO SEE. In our Hearts we know what’s being said isn’t TRUE. Thanks to all who have submitted comments they are greatly Appreciated.

    Reply
  22. Uncle Hilry Cameron - Los Angeles, Ca.

    We’ve suffered a Great Lost when we lost Rev. Gregory M. Johnson Jr. a Man of God like myself and I strongly believe in my heart that there is no way that his death was accidential and I will continue to Believe, Pray, and Hope for the rest of my Life that we receive JUSTICE. To the rest of our Family continue Praying and Keep the FAITH and one day the TRUTH will be FOUND. AMEN

    Reply
  23. Cousin Nicole Harris - Victorville, Ca..

    We Love and miss you cousin and we wiil not stop until the TRUTH is FOUND. I know in my HEART and have FAITH in GOD that one day we will get JUSTICE. R.I.P Cousin

    Reply
  24. Aunt Gwen - Los Angeles, Ca.

    As I sit here reading over the different comments from other web-sites and seeing what’s being said some positve and the few that are negative I just want to say that our family is NOT in DENIAL and trust and believe we have asked ourselves numerous questions regarding what happened and to my nephew and there is no way we are going to just sit back and ACCEPT what happened without further investigation. No matter how long it takes we will get JUSTICE, I know believe and have complete FAITH in GOD the TRUTH will one day be found. So those of you who have think we are in DENIAL ask yourself and then think, WHAT IF IT WAS YOUR SON, BROTHER,UNCLE,NEPHEW OR EVEN FATHER, What would you DO!,

    Reply
  25. Get the facts S-T-R-

    For whoever is asking about where Juniors Fraternity brothers and friends are- we are here! we have tried to talk- but the family won't listen- the papers won't listen- whenever someone tries to talk- denial and blame is pointed our way. Does this make anyone want to talk and reach out- when all they feel that they will be disrespected and closed out in someway or another? You think the family, or newspapers care to listen to college students?? Absolutely not!

    Who ever posted about "honorable teachers?" is full of it. How does this tragic event incorporate teachers? For those of you who did not attend Juniors candlelight vigil at the SJSU campus- he had many teachers speak- including teachers I have formally had- who gave genuine and charismatic respects towards junior AND his family. Stop finding ways to point fingers, especially at the school, the Greek system of SJSU, and UPD.

    Reading this article is a waste of your time. The newspapers are specifically meant to post what and who they interview- their job is to relay information reported–does this mean they are correct- absolutely not! For those of you who know the story and the details- break down this article, paragraph by paragraph because I can assure you, you will find information that is NOT correct. For example- I am not sure if Moss or the parents quoted "Gregory was the only African American in the Sigma Chi Fraternity at San Jose State University" but this is not true. Step foot inside that house and you will find a diverse crowd of wonderful young men, including several African Americans who were also considered some of Juniors closest friends here at San Jose State-so before racial acts of injustice are made–the facts should be correct before acquisitions are made.

    Stop the disrespect and let us remember Junior for the amazing person he was- for the care and consideration he showed the world- while always carrying a bright smile on his face because the acquisitions made towards Santa Clara County, SJSU, Sigma Chi, friends and UPD is certainly uncalled for to so ruthlessly disregard the kind acts of assistance that had and still continue from SJSU, Sigma Chi and friends.

    Reply
      1. JUSTICE

        gregory johnson jr was the only AFRICAN AMERICAN LIVING IN THE FRAT HOUSE AT THE TIME THE FRAT MEMBERS THAT RESPONED TO THIS ARTICLE U CAN TELL THEY ARE BACSICALLY SAYING THE SAME THINGS COLUSION? FAIL TO TELL READERS THE HOUSE WAS FULL OF RAT BROS AT THE TIME OF GREGORY JOHNSONS JR S
        DEATH

        Reply
  26. Terry Johnson

    I am so sadden by this situation of my best friend’s son.
    I cannot believe that in this day and age, people from a major part of this country can say anything, write anything, and it then becomes accepted by all the authorities. “Why has the investigation been closed by some
    departments and not by others. Why has’nt all the evidence been turned over to the proper authorities. “What happen to Gregory-Jr. personal belongings, who erased all his pictures and numbers off of his cell phone. ” Why has certain departments done such an unprofessional job with this case. “What really happen?

    Reply
  27. david24xdavis /Dawud Sadruddin Muhammad

    There are those who live their lives as though they are totally unaware. I would advise them If the act they comitted against Rev. Johnson resulted in his accidental death.,And they came forward,They are taking responsiblity.If on the other hand the truth does not become known., I want to warn you who were involved. You have killed a beliver.God Says, Who ever kills a Beliver must him self be killed. Gregory Has received Gods Mercy Because Gregory was a merciful person to others. Narrated jar^ir bin ‘Abdullah AL Bajali may god be merciful to him the Prophet saws said”He who is not merciful to others,will not be treated mercifully [8:42-O.B]

    Reply
  28. david24xdavis /Dawud Sadruddin Muhammad

    addednum:to my statement about what God says! Sura 4 ayat 93.” And whoever kills a believer intentionally,his punishment is hell; he shall abide in it,And God will send His wrath on him and curse him and prepare him a painfull chastisment.” Chapter 4. verse 93 M Muhammad Ali Trans. The holy Qur’an.

    Reply
  29. Terry Johnson

    Major reports should not use the family’s personal issues or situations of the family, as factors in the cause of this young boy’s death. ” it does not matter what an ex-girl friend may have to say; about what she and Greg discussed on a lunch date they might of had. Reporters of major newspapers are fishing for a cheap and lousy menas of writing a story. Instead of during some investigative and looking for facts to write about. Greg Jr. was very gifted and was very fond of life. For all the parties involved in this and responsible for getting to the bottom; this is what is expected of you as a professional person. Each individual should be question one on one, by different enforcement bodies and notes compared and evaluated. (This case is not closed).

    Reply
  30. A Friend

    Jr. which is what he liked to be called, was not the only African American in the fraternity. Please get your facts straight, there was another African American, as well as many Latino men, Cuban and Asian Americans active in the fraternity. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson know this to be true, because they spoke to the other African American fraternity brother who was one of Jr’s best friends. He spoke at his candlelight vigil and attended Jr’s funeral. San Jose State University is a diverse college with an extremely diverse Greek system. If the fraternity was racist they would not have allowed Jr. to pledge as well as the other African American gentleman that is part of the fraternity. I find is distasteful to show pictures of my good friend’s body in a newspaper and if this was my family member I would never disrespect him the way he is being disrespected right now. Jr. was an amazing man who was full of life and I miss him terribly, and would like to remember him for all of his positives, not by all of this drama due to the fact that his family cannot come to terms with his death. My prayers go out to Jr’s family, I hope one day they find some peace and let him finally rest.

    Reply
  31. Aunt Gwen - Los Angeles, Ca.

    I KNOW THAT YOU ARE RESTING PEACEFULLY WITH THE LORD ABOVE,HAPPY 21ST BIRTHDAY BOOBIE. I LOVE AND MISS YOU ALWAYS YOUR AUNT AND UNCLE IN CALIFORNIA , GWEN & CAMERON
    R.I.P – FOREVER

    Reply
  32. Aunt Maxine - Los Angeles, Ca.

    Dedicated to my nephew on his 21st Birthday
    Song – Yesterday
    By – Leona Lewis
    Album – Spirit

    I will always love and miss you nephew, until we meet again rest peacefully, your aunt Maxine and cousin Sabrea

    Reply
  33. Uncle Cameron - Los Angeles, Ca.

    Happy 21st Birthay Boobie, Rest In Peace, You are Truly Missed and Loved By All of Us. Your Uncle Cameron

    Reply
  34. Uncle Cameron - Los Angeles, Ca.

    I apologize for the mistake in my first comment this is the correction Happy 21st Birthday Boobie, Rest In Peace, You are Truly Missed and Loved By All Of Us. Your Uncle Cameron

    Reply
  35. Aunt Gwen- Los Angeles, Ca.

    We Love and Miss You Cousin Rest In Peace – Monique Francis, Michael,LaTeisha & LaTeiah Shepard and your 2nd cousins Lay’onna Clark (mother Monique) and Dye’mond Shepard(father Michael) Happy 21st Birthday Rest In Peace

    Reply
  36. Stand Up For Truth

    Hate crime? Yeah right. First of all Gregory was not the only black member of the chapter at the time and Gregory was well loved by the greek community and his brothers. I never saw any Sigma Chis speak ill of him and they always treated him the way they treated everyone else in their house. I fear that the grief this family is going through has detached them from reality. The only cover up that is probably going on here is the cover up of University Police’s total incompetance. You all should look into stories of UPD brutally attacking a dance instructor and several cases of civil rights violations against students of all colors. I doubt many “hate crimes” take place on a campus where whites only make up about a third of the student body, the only crimes I hear of are crimes of opportunity like muggings and car break ins.

    Reply
  37. Tiffany

    I attended Lowerlake high with greg and we were in the same grad class. This is a huge tragedy and from knowing greg personally i know he never would have killed himelf! my prayers are with his family…keep up the hard work and there will be justice for greg. May he rest in peace!

    Reply
  38. James Rowen

    The good news is that more and more people are asking questions about this tragedy. The Mission City Lantern, http://www.missioncitylantern.blogspot.com, San Jose Inside, http://www.sanjoseinside.com, and Metro Silicon Valley, have all run posts or articles about this tragic case. San Jose State Student Affairs officials have done nothing, not a thing to respond to these grieving parents. Also, dozens of Greek organizations have come up with a Facebook account, largely with university approval, to bash the Spartan Daily, who ran the story. San Jose State University President Jon Whitmore managed to take a flight to Washington the day the story broke, while Larry Carr has refused to respond, nor has Verril Phillips. Why? They simply do not care about the concerns of these parents. This has been the 11th incident under Verril Phillips’ watch where students have been put into harm’s way. Over a year ago, Phillips hide under his desk while students paraded around campus in fatigues and carried guns a week after the Viriginia Track tragedy. Call your state senators and assembly members and demand Student Affairs officials call in an independent auditor to review the evidence. Varril does not care, nor does Whitmore, until there are lawyers involved. Did you all know that three years ago, under Phillips’ watch, a executive director of student government was caught serving dangerous amounts of alcohol to underage students, and Phillips refused to follow open meeting law in dealing with it.

    Time for a full housecleaning at San Jose State, and a call for all alumni to withdraw donations or support for the university.

    Reply
  39. Thomas Bell

    I am a member of that fraternity, an alumni of SJSU, and a white/Mexican. I am very sorry for the loss of Junior. I never met him but that fraternity was a big part of my life and we had several brothers of African American decent who decided to shun the traditional black fraternities to try and be a part of a newer world. I grew up in Oakland and am well aware that racial injustice is alive and well. I have seen it too, from the inside and the results of it on the receiving end. I can also assure you that we were concerned with much more trivial quests in our time there than racial motivated killings. We were into girls, partying, class and sports. A far cry from the grievous allegations I am reading here. I see the holes that alarm the black community in this case. But they are all trivial and currently have no expert backing besides the opinion of the Johnson family. My only concern is that instead of finding justice the Johnsons will end up ruining the lives of 30 more young men who likely loved Junior as I loved D-Marsh, Hasan and Rajnani. If the university handled things poorly, go after them, but accusations of murder against an entire group of people (not all of whom are white) is sloppy, paranoid and reckless. Carry out your investigations, hire a private investigator, get your second opinions, seek your justice, but be weary of wild accusations at the men in that fraternity.

    Reply
  40. Jessica

    I’m very sorry for your great loss.

    I just stumbled across this story in a doctor’s office a couple of weeks ago. I was reading the Metro and as I turned the page, I noticed a picture of Jr. and his beautiful smile. I glanced up to the top of the page and noticed that it was not a happy story. In fact it was a very sad story and I can’t seem to get it out of my mind.

    May he rest in peace.

    Reply
  41. Carol Hoover & the Hoover family

    Rev. Denise Johnson:

    I fondly remember young Gregory Johnson when he was a teenager here in Hawaii. My prayers are with you as you search for the truth. May God love, strength, power be with you.

    The Hoovers
    Trinity Missionary Baptist Church
    Honolulu, Hawaii

    Reply
  42. alea

    I AM LOST FOR WORDS! THE INVESTIGATION WAS HORRIBLE! THEY(THE POLICE) COULD HAVE DONE WAAAAAY MORE INVESTIGATING THAN THEY DID! AND WHY ARENT THE FRAT BROTHERS TRYING TO DO N E THING TO HELP!? TWO AND TWO ARE JUST NOT ADDING UP WHATSOEVER! YOU KNOW HE DID NOT KILL HIMSELF YET YOUR SO SELFISH AND CONCERND ABOUT YOU! WOOOOOOOOOW! THIS YOUNG AFRICAN AMERICANS LIFE WAS TAKEN FROM HIM! HOW DARE HIS FRAT BROTHERS NOT SPEAK UP FOR HIM! WELL….IT ALL MAKES SENSE! THEY OBVIOUSLY KNOW SOMETHING AND KNOW WHO DID IT! SO OF COURSE THEY WOULDNT SAY ANYTHING! THATS TO LIKE RIGHT TO DO! MAY GOD HAVE MERCY ON YOU! BECAUSE YOU ARE GOING TO NEED IT!

    TO THE FAMILY……….MY HEART GOES OUT TO YOU! YOU ALL KEEP YOUR HEAD UP! I KNOW EASIER SAID THAN DONE! THIS SEASON WILL PASS AND YOU WILL GET TO THE BOTTOM OF THIS! GOD HAS KEPT YOU THIS FAR! I HONOR YOUR STRENGHT AND COURAGE! YOU HAVE MY SUPPORT ALL THE WAY AND MY PRAYERS WILL ALWAYS BE WITH YOU! STAY ENCOURAGED AND KEEP PUSHING FORWARD!

    Reply
  43. Elder Lisa Moses

    Gregory was by far one of the most well mannered, young man I have ever met; He had an extreme love for the Lord and would never allow his age to deter him; He had a smile that would light up any room; He loved life; He understood that He had great purpose in life; and had every intention of living it to the fullest. I will never believe that he ended his own life. I am saddened by this tradegy; He Held so much promise. Rest in Peace. Well see you again in the morning.

    Reply
  44. JACQUE

    ..WHOMEVER SAID THERE WERE OTHER BLACKS IN THE FRAT HOUSE THATGREGORY JOHNSON JR.RESIDED IN JUST FABRICATED.GREGORY WAS THE ONLY BLACK IN THE HOUSE.HIS OTHER BROTHER DID NOT LIVE IN THE FRAT HOUSE.HOW IS IT THAT WHITES MAKE UP A THIRD OF THE POPULATION AT ANY UNIVERSITY EXCEPT FOR A BLACK UNIVERSITY? DO YOUR MATH!BLACKS ONLY MAKE UP TWELVE PERCENT OF THE POPULATION IN THE U.S..WHOEVER SAID THEY WERE WHITE/MEXICAN; I FIND THAT TO BE LUDICROUS.YOU ARE SLOPPY TO EVEN SAY THAT.YOU ARE THE ONE THATS PARANOID TRYING TO FIT IN.WHO CARES THAT YOU ARE WHITE/MEXICAN?NOBODY USES THAT TERM.YOU NEED TO GET A LIFE; YOU SAID YOU DIDN’T KNOW JR. SO WHO ARE YOU TO VOICE YOUR OPINION ON MY FAMILY?HOW IS IT THAT ON NOVEMBER 22 THE FRAT HOUSE WAS FULL OF STUDENTS WHEN GREGORY’S BODY WAS FOUND AND NOBODY KNOWS WHAT HAPPENED? THEY ALL YELLED SUICIDE.THE HOUSE WAS FULL OF WHITE STUDENTS BUT,THE ONE AND ONLY BLACK STUDENT IS FOUND DEAD.

    Reply
  45. кaппИ

    Текст лично мне ничего не дал. Хотя для многих может оказаться реально полезным… :)

    Reply
  46. Magdalena Morris

    Keep up your search, God will give you the strength and endurance to protect your child and to seek the truth. I am ashamed and uphauled that something like this could still happen in our Country. I should not be surprised as I too have been through alot of injustices simply due to my race and who I am. However, God was always with me and helped me to defend myself.

    I knew instantly something was wrong when your beautiful smile had disappeared from my view at our water class. We will pray for your family and ask God to help you. Put your anger in God’s hands, as it will only distruct you and not the right ones. God is merciful and very exact, I know from experience.

    I know the pain is unmerciful, but do your best!

    Reply
  47. Gods justice

    when you kill the innocent their blood cries out from the grave remember cain and able sigma chi members and the police that know what happened to this innocent young man all that lie God has a place for you God hates liars even if you dont believe the word of God says every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess he is Lord what a dark day for san jose state

    Reply

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