The Johnson Family Story

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Nineteen year-old Army PFC LaVena Johnson, was found dead on a military base in Balad, Iraq in 2005. The U.S. Army ruled Lavena's death a suicide, but an autopsy report and photographs revealed Johnson had a broken nose, black eye, loose teeth, burns from a corrosive chemical on her genitals, and a gunshot wound that seemed inconsistent with suicide. LaVena's father, John Johnson, shares his family's fight to get answers from the military about his daughter's death. LaVena's story is the eighth mini-documentary that Protect Our Defenders has produced about military sexual trauma. Protect Our Defenders Foundation is a human rights organization. We honor, support and give voice to the brave women and men in uniform who have been raped or sexually assaulted by fellow service members. We seek to fix the military training, investigation and adjudication systems for sexual harassment, assault and rape --systems which often re-victimize assault survivors by blaming them and failing to prosecute perpetrators.

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  1. 14029902
    14029902 May 15, 2013

    Makes me wonder how many of the Army's "suicides" are really murder.

  2. kennethellman1
    kennethellman1 Oct 21, 2013

    October 21, 2013 From Kenneth Ellman, Box 18, Newton, New Jersey 07860 Ref: Video on, Rape/Murder of Army PFC LaVena Johnson Your web site should keep this video on Main Page and don’t take it down until we have a definitive answer. IF the video is correct then a significant and grave attack on an American Soldier occurred and on our nation itself as a social community. Our nation may then be further degraded and injured by the apparent failure of our Military and Civilian Government to apprehend and prosecute those who raped, tortured and killed this soldier. Keeping in mind that this entire event occurred in a secure U.S. Military location. We need more information released and the entire autopsy report and law enforcement investigation must be put on line for review. Where is that web site??? Has Lieutenant General Flora D. Darpino, the Judge Advocate General, responded to this?? If not, why not? Where is her written response? What written response has the Secretary of the Army and the Secretary of Defense provided? Has Congress conducted a hearing under Oath to investigate the records and statements given in this matter? Where is the web site that has all the records and responses of our Government? We need to read it all and act upon it. Kenneth Ellman,

  3. deal39
    deal39 Jan 03, 2016

    This needs to be brought to public attention now. This is a crime against all women in the military and civilian world. We as a whole need action. Bruises on her face, broken nose, genitals removed? And this has been ruled a suicide? The latest obscenity was six Army medical officers sent to convince Dr. and Mrs. Johnson that their beloved daughter "killed" herself. Let the Pentagon send a battalion of liars if they want, it doesn't change the fact that PFC Lavena Johnson was murdered, and her killer is still loose.]on Somewhere in this world that predator or predators are walking this earth free and without worry. How long are we going to let this happen. Does it need to happen to someone in power else's daughter, wife or mother before it is brought to light. Haven't we done enough to our female service members.

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