Baltimore (May 12, 2021) – Yesterday, a Baltimore City Judge sentenced Arnold Johnson to the maximum penalty of Life for first-degree murder, plus 20 years for the use of a handgun in the commission of a crime of violence, and five years to run concurrently for a prohibited person.
On October 22, 2019, a jury found Johnson guilty of first-degree Murder; Possession of a Handgun in Commission of a Crime of Violence; Possession of a Firearm after being convicted of a Disqualifying Crime; and, Wear, Carry, Transport of a Handgun.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant State’s Attorney Shaundria Hanna.
On February 15, 2019, at approximately 3:45 a.m., Baltimore Police Department (BPD) detectives were notified of a shooting incident on the 4900 block of Goodnow Road. Upon arrival, BPD officers observed a medic unit on scene attending to a woman, later identified as Maryann Wellington, who was lying on her back on the floor of the kitchen, suffering from an apparent gunshot wound to the head. Ms. Wellington was pronounced dead on the scene.
When officers arrived, there was a male present, later identified as Arnold Johnson. Johnson informed officers that he and the victim shared a child and the same residence. Detectives’ recovered one .40 caliber shell casing from the kitchen counter and transported Johnson to the BPD Homicide Unit to give a statement. During questioning, Johnson allegedly shared varying explanation regarding the night’s activities. According to Court documents, Johnson told officers that he arrived home to an open door and he found the victim lying on the floor. BPD officers observed no signs of forced entry.
Further investigation revealed an ongoing tumultuous relationship between the victim, Maryann Wellington, and Johnson. Detectives spoke with one of the victim’s friends and after a thorough search of the victim’s phone, they uncovered a call recorder application. The application allegedly recorded the full two-hour and 54 minute audio call between the victim and her friend immediately before and during the incident. The audio call purportedly recorded a verbal exchange between the victim and Johnson where the victim yelled “get off of me,” and “so you’re going to hit me;” and soon after the sound of a gunshot was heard on the audio.
Johnson was prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm and ammunition due to a prior conviction for second-degree assault in Howard County, Maryland.
“Harassment, threats, and violence of any kind perpetrated by domestic abusers will not be tolerated by this office. I hope that this lengthy sentence – the maximum possible – provides Ms. Wellington’s family with some measure of justice and solace as they mourn the sudden and tremendous loss of their loved one,” said State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby.