Chief interviewed in satanic sex case

Conflict of Interest Could Send Case to AG's Office
January 29, 2009 2:12:16 PM PST
If a satanic sex case in Durham makes it to trial, the city's police chief could potentially be called as a witness for the defense. Eyewitness News has learned Chief Jose Lopez was questioned about visits he and his wife made to a home where a man and woman claimed they were beaten and raped over a six month period.

Last July, Joy Johnson, a former Democratic Party member was accused of aiding and abetting her husband Joseph Craig in an alleged satanic sex ritual.

Given the Johnson’s political ties and popularity in the Durham community, it was not uncommon for the couple to host social events at their home, sources say. The couple also operated a holistic health business called Indigo Dawn Inc. out of their Durham home.

According to Eyewitness News sources, Lopez and his wife visited the home during the same time period the alleged victims claim they were abused, but never witnessed any suspicious activity. If called as witnesses, their potential testimony could support the Johnson’s claims that they were wrongly accused.

Lopez declined to comment.

Attorney General Could Take Over Case

Eyewitness News has learned the Durham County District Attorney's Office has spoken with the special prosecution unit of the Attorney General's office about the charges facing the Johnsons and Dianna Palmer - a former chairwoman of the Durham Democratic Committee.

Palmer is accused of removing evidence from the Johnson's home, but charges against her have been dropped in District Court. If the Attorney General’s Office takes over the case, it could seek an indictment against Palmer.

The case against Joseph Craig will be handled by the Durham County District Attorney’s Office.

The Attorney General has yet to receive a formal request from Durham prosecutors to take over the case.


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