A little out of hand

The accusers were longtime friends of Todd Johnson’s family. Instead of going to the police, the young women wanted to meet with Johnson and his wife to tell them what their son was alleged to have done. An audio recording of the meeting was made on Saturday, May 20, 2017. Johnson’s wife did not attend. Todd Johnson was a homicide detective in Long Beach, California at the time.

On the recording, the mother of one of the women begins by explaining the circumstances. “Some shit went down last night, and it’s not OK, and I don’t know where to start with this,” she says.

During a party hosted at her house, several 20-something-year-olds — close friends since childhood — played cards, used the Jacuzzi, and drank alcohol. Johnson’s son spent the night at the house. In the early morning hours, he allegedly raped two young women as they tried to sleep.

One woman tells Johnson that she passed out wearing clothes. She woke up naked. Johnson’s son was naked on top of her, she says.

“I don’t know what your thoughts are about this,” the mother says to Johnson, “but I’m pretty upset about it.”

“Yeah,” Johnson says, sounding untroubled. “I mean, he’s not a bad kid. Everybody’s known him forever.”

The father of one of the women bristles at Johnson’s unconcerned response.

Johnson snarls at him: “You don’t know me. I don’t know you. So don’t fuckin’ grind your little teeth right there, dude. Cuz I’m not gonna play that game.”

“This is his daughter,” the mother tells Johnson.

“I get that,” Johnson says. “Wow, dude.”

The father says that the women wanted to tell Johnson what had happened rather than press charges.

“I get that,” Johnson says, dismissive. “Honestly, my kid’s not a bad kid. It got a little out of hand, obviously. I totally get that.”

As Johnson speaks, the mother says, “Todd, Todd, Todd,” as if wanting him to see the seriousness of the matter.

A young woman can be heard sobbing. She tells Johnson that she’s had a difficult day.

“I’m sorry, but you know I’m just a little stressed,” Johnson says. “You know what I do for a living? I work homicide.”

Suddenly, it’s all about Johnson and his job as a police detective: “I got murders every day. I got dead bodies laying all over the streets. So I’m a stressful motherfucker.”

“Todd, what do you think about this?” the mother asks, trying to re-focus on the alleged sexual assaults. “I mean, what do you think?”

“I don’t know. Maybe we’ll just throw fuckin’ Blake in prison,” he says with a note of sarcasm. “I don’t know. I’m just pissed at him.”

Johnson’s tone becomes threatening: “You gotta understand where I come from. I don’t fuck around. I will whoop — I will go home and fuck him up. I don’t even care.”

“What do we do?” the mother asks. “Where do we go from here?”

The father tells Johnson they’ve said what they wanted to say, and now he and his family are saying goodbye to the Johnson family.

“You guys know I’ve worked this job for 20 years,” Johnson says, reminding them again that he is an officer of the law. As if to suggest that two allegations of sexual assault are inconsequential, Johnson says: “I’ve seen everything under the sun possible.”

“I know you have,” the mother says. “But you haven’t seen someone like your daughter, like has happened — this is like — come on.”

A young woman sobs. Johnson says sorry to each young woman by name, but does not say specifically for what he is sorry. The meeting ends.

The recording stands as a document of Johnson’s disdain for crime victims and their families.

Ultimately, the young women sought rape kit exams and filed a police report. Johnson’s son was not arrested in connection with the allegations and was not prosecuted.

It’s notable that during the meeting Johnson expressed no doubt about his son’s guilt.

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