From The Tribune staff reports
KIMBERLY — The man accused in the shooting death of Kimberly police officer Nick O’Rear, has been ordered to undergo a mental evaluation, according to court documents.
Preston Chyenne Johnson, 38, of Addison, Ala., is charged with three counts of capital murder, one count of attempted murder and one count of discharging a firearm into an occupied vehicle.
He was already sentenced to 200 months in prison in an unrelated case. He pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm in January. Johnson, who was prohibited from having a firearm because of prior felony convictions, unlawfully possessed an Anderson AM-15 5.56mm rifle on October 31, 2019, according to prosecutors.
Then on Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020, police said Warrior PD attempted to pull over a vehicle, which did not stop. Officer Nick O’Rear, from the Kimberly Police Department, joined the chase. O’Rear proceeded to pull in front of the vehicle and that’s when investigators said Johnson fired into the police cruiser.
O’Rear was struck and crashed his vehicle shortly thereafter. He was escorted to UAB Hospital by Warrior firefighters along with a large contingent of police officers. O’Rear was later pronounced dead at the hospital.
Johnson will be arraigned on those charges on Monday, June 7, 2021. Prosecutors have already said they will seek the death penalty in the case.