Rep. Morgan 'shocked' by Rep. Johnson's suicide, says he spoke to Johnson Wednesday morning

12/14/2017 11:36 AM

Rep. Wesley Morgan, R-Richmond, said he and Rep. Dan Johnson, who committed suicide on Wednesday evening, originally bonded as “black sheep” of the Republican Party of Kentucky in 2016.

Morgan, who spoke to Pure Politics by phone Thursday morning, said that he had talked to Johnson by telephone on Wednesday morning, and had no inkling of what would come later that evening.

The Richmond lawmaker said he saw Johnson’s alleged suicide note on Wednesday on Facebook, but it was Rep. Phil Moffett, R-Louisville, who called to inform him that Johnson was dead.

“I was just like every other person, just totally in shock,” Morgan said when he learned of the news.

Johnson, Morgan said, was “distraught” and that he was unsure what led him to take his own life.

“…(W)ether he was guilty or the media attacking him, I’m not sure, I don’t know — I guess we’ll never know. I just hate it so bad — it’s awful, and I feel so awful for his family. I know Rebecca must be devastated this morning,” he said. “I can’t believe. I just can’t believe. I don’t know why he just didn’t resign and walk away — unless he just really thought he was going to be charged of that molestation charge. And I’m not saying he did it. I’m not, by any stretch of the imagination, because it’s not been proven that he did it. But obviously something triggered something within him.”

Morgan lashed out against the media, and the political parties in the state for reporting on the allegations and for politicians calling on Johnson to resign. He said the issue with Johnson was different than the issue with Rep. Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, and three other Republican lawmakers which have reportedly signed a sexual harassment settlement.

Listen to Johnson’s full statement in the clip below.

Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics available exclusively on Spectrum News. Pure Politics is the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like his coverage of the backlog of DNA rape kits waiting to be tested in Kentucky. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Pure Politics airs weeknight at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Nick on Twitter @NStorm_Politics. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or nicholas.storm@charter.com.

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