Almon Johnson Arraigned for Lower Haight Murder

February 2, 2011

ADA Seth Steward, DA Gascón’s Office, (415) 553-1014
Erica Terry Derryck, DA Gascón’s Office, (415) 553-1167

Almon Johnson Arraigned for Lower Haight Murder

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – District Attorney George Gascón announced today the arraignment of Almon Johnson (DOB 11-20-81 CN 11002520) for the murder of Vanessa Herrera.

Defendant Johnson appeared before the Honorable Jeffrey Ross in Department 12 of San Francisco Superior Court on Wednesday February 2, 2011 for arraignment on one count of murder in violation of California Penal Code Section 187, one count of arson in violation of California Penal Code Section 451(d). Defendant Johnson pled not guilty to all charges and allegations.

According to court documents, on Monday January 24, 2011, San Francisco police officers responded to a car fire in the Lower Haight neighborhood. The investigation became a homicide investigation when a body was discovered in the vehicle. Allegedly, defendant Johnson killed Ms. Herrera and then drove to San Francisco. Once defendant Johnson arrived in San Francisco, he set fire to the vehicle and burned both the vehicle and Ms. Herrera’s body. The motive for the killing and the relationship between the two remains under investigation.

The defendant was arrested on January 25, 2011 by SFPD and he is currently being held in SF County Jail. Bail was set at $10 million.

The maximum statutory penalty for murder in violation of California Penal Code section 187 is 25 years to life in prison, and potentially an additional 16 months, 2 years or 3 years in state prison for arson. The case was continued to Wednesday, February 23, 2011 for discovery in Department 12 before Judge Ross.

The arrest of the defendant is the result of the investigation of San Francisco Police Department Inspectors Robert Velarde, Michael Dudoroff and Daniel Dedet. Eric Fleming is the Assistant District Attorney prosecuting the case.