BINGHAMTON, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Jason Johnson was sentenced to a minimum of 60 years to life in New York State prison after a jury found him guilty of nine charges relating to the attempted murder of state trooper Becky Seager.
Johnson remains unrepentant. He says he isn’t asking for sympathy, but rather, for people to consider that he didn’t do it.
The night of June 9th, 2021, a jury determined that Jason Johnson shot Becky Seager after state troopers responded to a check welfare call. Johnson claims that he was shooting at police vehicles in hopes that it would intimidate the officers to leave the property.
Broome County Court Judge Joe Cawley wasn’t buying it. “You discharge that weapon again, knowing full well, police are in the area. What train of thought makes anybody think shooting a high-powered rifle while police are in the area is going to scare them away? I can’t even wrap my head around that.”
Cawley’s court room was filled with members of law enforcement, including the victim, Becky Seager.
She was shot in the hip while managing traffic in and out of the area.
Seager addressed the court and says her life has completely flipped upside down. She has not returned to work and suffers from PTSD, depression, anxiety, and unending discomfort and pain.
Broome County District Attorney Mike Korchak says that when Seager was in the hospital, he promised her that justice would be served. “Attempting to murder those who swear to serve and protect our community. I mean, this was an attack on law enforcement, but it was actually an attack on all of us, who rely on these brave men and women every day to keep us safe.”
From the start, Johnson and his family have contended that it was friendly fire, either from a fellow police officer, or self-inflicted, that caused Seager’s injury.
Johnson’s parents spoke after the sentencing and claim that the troopers’ body cam recordings have missing footage from that night, and that there was an additional vehicle not accounted for near Seager at the same time she was shot.
David Johnson says, “Is it a reasonable request to expect a more complete state police internal investigation, or, by the Department of Justice, or the FBI, or the Investigator General?”
Jason, who was high on marijuana at the time of the shooting, says he would accept a conviction for criminal mischief for firing his gun, but attempted murder is a gross miscarriage of justice.
Jason Johnson says, “But I’ll never apologize for something that I did not do. And I did not shoot Rebecca Seager. And nor did I ever fire a gun at Sergeant Meehan nor any other person that night.”
Cawley made Johnson’s sentences consecutive, bringing them up to 60 to life, far more than many defendants get for murder.
The Johnson’s plan to go forward with the appeal process, and to advocate for an internal investigation.
Meanwhile, Seager says she goes to physical therapy for the simplest of tasks, such as folding laundry, or holding her son.