Woman Accused Of Killing Family Members Pleads Not Guilty

Regina Johnson Allegedly Stayed With Bodies For 3 Days

A San Carlos woman accused of fatally shooting her husband and 14-year-old daughter in their condominium and staying with the bodies for three days before reporting the deaths pleaded not guilty Wednesday to murder and weapons charges and was ordered held without bail.

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Regina Renee Johnson, 55, cried out "mama" as she was led out of the courtroom by sheriff's deputies.

Johnson is accused in last week's slaying of 56-year-old Reuben Johnson, who was retired from the Navy and working as a security guard, and Aaliyah Johnson, a freshman at West Hills High School.

The defendant faces 100 years to life in prison if convicted, said Deputy District Attorney Claudine Ruiz.

She said the defendant called family members out-of-state, informing them that her husband and daughter were dead, and they relayed the information to the San Diego Police Department. Officers sent to the Johnson condominium about 1:30 a.m. Saturday found Reuben Johnson's body in an upstairs hallway and his daughter face-down in her bedroom, Ruiz said.

Both had been shot in the head, and Reuben Johnson also had a gunshot wound to the upper body, according to the prosecutor, who said both bodies were in a state of decomposition when discovered.

A 9 mm handgun registered to Reuben Johnson was found in the residence, the prosecutor said.

The slayings could have been committed as early as May 30, three days before the gruesome discoveries, Ruiz said.

A motive was not revealed, but Regina Johnson reportedly had lost her financial services job recently. Investigators said there were no previous reports of violence in the Johnson family, and the defendant had no criminal record.

A status conference is set for June 13 and a preliminary hearing for June 19.

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