Samuel Johnson Jr was a 26-year-old bus driver from San Antonio, Tx., with a one-year-old son and a new baby on the way with his fiance when he was found dead in a cemetery in 2010.
Vanessa Cameron had orchestrated a plot to murder her ex-boyfriend and claim a whopping $750,000 in life insurance money.
Cameron, whose mother was a San Antonio police sergeant at the time, recruited her sister Susan Sutton, her brother in law Bernard Brown and his cousin LaKisha Brown to help her kill the father of her one-year-old child.
Johnson was lured to Sutton’s home after being told she had money for him that Cameron owed him. When he arrived, LaKisha Brown bashed him in the head with a two-by-four before Bernard Brown commenced beating him and then tying him up.
Samuel Johnson begged for his life
The pair then drove Johnson to a remote location, where he begged for his life before they shot him dead. They then telephoned Cameron using a coded message to say the murder had been done. Cameron had gone on a trip to Mississippi to provide herself with an alibi.
Vanessa Cameron was later driven to the police station by her police officer mother, where she admitted to having prior knowledge of Johnson’s murder but denied being the chief orchestrator.
In 2010, Cameron was sentenced to 70-years in prison. However, in 2013 her conviction was tossed out on a legal technicality, and a new trial was ordered. In 2019 a new trial took place, and once again, Cameron was found guilty of murder and was sentenced to life in prison.
LaKisha Brown entered a plea deal and testified against her fellow conspirators meaning she would serve a maximum sentence of 25-years. Susan Sutton also took a 25-year plea deal for her involvement in the crime.
Despite the testimony of Sutton and LaKisha Brown, a jury acquitted Bernard Brown of any wrongdoing in 2013. His attorney’s successfully argued that his three female co-defendants had tried to frame him.
Amazingly, it’s alleged that Samuel Johnson had agreed to go along with his murder so his infant son could have the insurance money, but when he backed out of the scheme, his killers decided to go along with the plan anyway.
More from Diabolical
Follow the links to read about more murders profiled on Diabolical.
Kevin Boyd Sr. was stabbed over 20 times and beaten to death with a baseball bat. His killers were his ex-wife Lynn Boyd and his teenage son Kevin Boyd Jr. They had hoped to collect on a $500,000 life insurance policy.
Kwaneta Harris murdered her boyfriend, Michael Giles, and buried him in the backyard. She then proceeded with an elaborate scheme to make people think he was still alive so she could steal his identity.
Diabolical airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.