No Jail For Woman Who Shot Husband

SNOW HILL — A Bishopville woman, arrested on attempted murder charges in May after shooting her newlywed husband in the abdomen with a small caliber pistol during a domestic argument will not face jail time after being found guilty this week on a first-degree assault charge.

Alice Carmita Johnson, 72, of Bishopville, on Tuesday appeared in Worcester County Circuit Court to face attempted murder and other serious charges after allegedly shooting her husband of just six months during a domestic argument. Johnson entered an Alford Plea to a first-degree assault charge and was sentenced to 18 months in jail, all of which was suspended in favor of two years of supervised probation. In an Alford Plea, a defendant does not admit guilt, but acknowledges the state has enough evidence to prosecute the case.

Around 10:30 a.m. on Monday, May 9, the Worcester County 911 Dispatch Center received a call from a man reporting his wife of six months, identified as Johnson, had just shot him in the abdomen during a domestic argument in their Bishopville home on Hotel Rd. Upon arrival, Worcester County Sheriff’s Deputies met with the victim, Robert Lee Leonard, 64, who handed the officers a .22 caliber pistol with which he had allegedly been shot. According to police reports, the weapon appeared to have been freshly fired.

Leonard told police he and Johnson had gotten into an argument that had escalated. According to police reports, the couple had been arguing about Viagra, a popular male enhancement drug, although the tenor or context of the argument was not included.

A short time later, Johnson allegedly produced the small caliber pistol, aimed it at Leonard’s abdomen and fired a round, which entered his body. Leonard told police he was able to grab the gun from his wife’s hands, which prevented any further injuries. Leonard was then taken by ambulance to PRMC in Salisbury for treatment of injuries.

According to police reports, Worcester County Sheriff’s Deputies attempted to speak with Johnson about the incident, but she evoked her Miranda Rights and said she would not make a statement without first consulting her attorney. Because of the serious nature of the incident, the Worcester County Bureau of Investigation (WCBI) was called into to continue the investigation.

Johnson was later arrested and charged with attempted second-degree murder, first-degree assault and reckless endangerment.