MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Delois Johnson is inconsolable as she laments the death of her son at the hands of two Shelby County Sheriff’s deputies Wednesday.
“See, I hurt. I hurt. This killing has got to stop,” Johnson said. “Y’all killed that boy in cold blood.”
Undercover narcotics deputies were trying to pull 33-year-old Bryan Johnson Gregory over around 3 p.m. on Decatur Street.
They suspected him of dealing marijuana and had a warrant to search his house in another part of town.
“And to know all that was going on and not hear anything. That’s scary,” said Lafronia Lavender, who lives on Decatur Street.
Things got scarier when Johnson allegedly hit the gas, ramming two undercover vehicles.
Once he finally stopped, deputies say he reached for a gun. At that point, they said they shot him.
“The officer was ordering him out of the car. That’s when he reached for a weapon underneath the seat,” Chief Deputy Floyd Bonner, with the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, said.
Johnson, a husband and father of two, was hit in the shoulder and rushed to the hospital while his passenger was led off for questioning.
“Y’all said that he went under the seat. No he didn’t, no he didn’t. My baby has a heart of gold,” the suspect’s mother said.
A veteran deputy was grazed by a bullet that hit his leg.
“We think it was a ricochet. A ricochet that occurred, and he’s fine,” Chief Bonner said.
But hours of surgery couldn’t save Johnson. He was pronounced dead around 8 p.m.
His family now puts their faith in the ultimate justice system.
“God has the last say-so. He has the last say-so. My baby boy. It’s not over until God says so,” Johnson said.
Deputies said they recovered a gun and drugs from Johnson’s vehicle.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is now investigating.
NOTE: The TBI identified the suspect as Brian Gregory, but family said he is known by both Gregory and Johnson. We found multiple spellings of his first name in court records.