WIVT/WBGH – Today marked the start of the Jason and David Johnson jury trial in Broome County Court.

Broome County District Attorney, Mike Korchak, began by introducing the case to the jury.

On June 9th, 2021, on East Windsor Road in Colesville, New York, Jason Johnson was accused of attempting to murder a police officer.

On that day, Steve Warner, one of the Johnson’s neighbors, noticed a man crouched outside in some tall grass.

Later on, Warner went outside to discover that the man had been etching several neighbors’ names and addresses into the sidewalk.

Directly in front of Warner’s house, there was a message that read “snitches get stitches” with an arrow pointed directly at his house.

Warner called the police regarding the depiction on the sidewalk, and within minutes there was an officer on site.

When the officer attempted to approach the man, Warner says the man then disappeared into the heavy woods and brush.

Johnson’s lawyer, the defendant in this case, says that Jason Johnson has always been anxious around police and government.

Soon after, Warner confirms that he heard a gunshot from what he claims to be a high-powered rifle.

Warner then reported the shot fired to the police, and more officers arrived shortly after.

At 9:17 P.M. one of the responding officers, Ryan Thorpe, was standing next to his marked vehicle when his car was shot.

Then, at roughly 9:30 P.M. Trooper Becky Seager responded to the location and was tasked with managing traffic in-and-out of the area surrounding the Johnson residence.

She was redirecting a truck coming down East Windsor Road when she was shot in the hip.

The defendant claims that the Seager’s wound is more representative of a bullet fired from a .223 rather than the .270 rifle that was later found on Jason Johnson’s property.

The defendant asked the jury to consider the intent of Johnson’s actions throughout the events that took place on June 9th, 2021.

The defendant argues that Johnson was not intending to kill any officers, but rather hoping to get them off of his property.

After Seager was shot, the police continued the 19 hour manhunt for Jason Johnson before he was finally found along the banks of the Susquehanna River near Route 79 and was arrested.

Jason’s father David Johnson was out of town at the time, but received a call and was notified of the events that were taking place.

The police asked David for consent to search the residence, specifically, a small hunting cabin on the Johnson’s property; David agreed.

Twenty days after the event, David returned home and checked the hunting cabin.

There was no caution tape or indication that the police had searched the premises.

David began rearranging items in the cabin, and was later charged with tampering of physical evidence.

The defendant argues that David did not know that the police were not done searching the property, hence why he began to “clean up.”

Jason Johnson is also accused of criminal use of a firearm, aggravated assault of a police officer, assault in the first degree, and attempted assault in the first degree.

The trial continues tomorrow, August 4th, at Broome County Court.