KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — A man pleaded to two counts of second-degree murder in the shooting death of his parents.
Nicholas Johnson pleaded Monday and “will now serve decades in prison for his actions,” according to Kalamazoo County Prosecutor Jeff Getting. He was charged in February with two counts of murder and weapons charges in the deaths of his parents Gary and Laura Johnson.
Nick Johnson was the couple’s only child and sole beneficiary of their trust.
Authorities said he shot and killed them at their Portage home on Feb. 3, 2021. Their bodies were found buried in a shallow grave at Gourdneck State Game Area, only a few miles from their home, on Feb. 12 of the same year.
When Nick Johnson was arrested, authorities said he was with his mother’s SUV, which had blood in it, and had one of her prescriptions and her cellphone. They say he also had a gun that was the same caliber as the one used in the killings.
He was found able to stand trial in June after completing a competency exam.
“First, I want to again extend my sympathy and condolences to the family and loved ones of Gary and Laura Johnson. To lose someone in this way is terrible,” wrote Getting in a statement Monday. “Knowing that he has been held accountable, and that there will be severe consequence helps the family of the victims to move forward. This outcome also protects the public from someone who obviously was a danger to our community.”
Nick Johnson is scheduled for sentencing on Nov. 1.
He is also considered a person of interest in the case of 17-year-old Bonifacio Pena, who vanished in 2018 after having last been seen with Nick Johnson.
— News 8’s Rachel Van Gilder contributed to this report.