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Fond du Lac man faces homicide charge, allegedly shot victim four times

Timothy Brown appeared virtually in court Wednesday.
Posted at 5:23 PM, Aug 31, 2022

FOND DU LAC — Fond du Lac resident Timothy Brown appeared virtually in court for the first time Wednesday, facing charges of first-degree intentional homicide and possession of a firearm by a felon. The state also released a criminal complaint containing the details of the investigation.

Brown's bail was is set at $1 million.

According to the criminal complaint, Brown, 32, allegedly shot 40-year-old Brandon Johnson four times, once between the eyes, at 3:12 a.m. on Aug. 20.

Johnson was found dead at 7:20 a.m. by police in the 200 block of Marquette Street.

“The impact of this tragedy is far reaching,” Fond du Lac Police Chief Aaron Goldstein said. “What started as a birthday celebration for Brandon on August 19, ended with a verbal argument before becoming the victim of a homicide."

Goldstein said police executed a search warrant of Brown’s residence on West Cotton Street and found clothes matching those worn by the suspect in surveillance footage from the night. They then arrested Brown.

The criminal complaint stated that crime lab data later revealed that a blood stain on one of Brown’s shoes matched Johnson’s DNA.

The state pieced together a timeline of the night using surveillance footage from nearby residences and business and witness testimony.

“Surveillance is an incredible tool for investigators to build these cases,” Fond du Lac District Attorney Eric Toney said. “Because when you're dealing anytime with a homicide, we have a victim that can't share that information with law enforcement. And so video surveillance can be incredibly helpful in building timelines and seeing where people may have been.”

The criminal complaint stated that Johnson and Brown began arguing near a beer garden outside of Leon’s Corner Pub on North Main Street around 3 a.m.

Several witnesses interviewed by police said they attempted to calm Johnson down during the argument, according to the criminal complaint.

A few minutes later, the two men were observed walking off camera toward the area where Johnson’s body was later found.

Detective Kristina Melihan said in the criminal complaint that she heard the four gunshots on audio and video surveillance from an address on North Main Street. A neighbor also told detectives that he or she heard about 3-4 gunshots around 3 a.m.

In the criminal complaint, detectives stated that they interviewed Brown on the day of the incident, but he denied being at the scene and said he had not communicated with Johnson in “a couple of months.”

Brown said he was at a friend’s house in Waupun and returned home at 10:46 p.m. He said he did not leave the house for the rest of the night.

Two days later, police said they interviewed Brown again. This time, he admitted he had previously lied to detectives, and had been at the scene when he got into a “little argument” with Johnson. The criminal complaint states that Brown maintained that he did not kill Johnson and did not possess a firearm.

Brown was convicted of manufacturing and delivering cocaine in 2013, a felony that prohibits him from owning a firearm.

According to detective Lee Mikulec in the criminal complaint, 0.8 grams of suspected cocaine was found in Johnson’s pocket when police examined his body.

Brown will appear in court again Sept. 9 for a preliminary hearing.

“The charges in this case reflect our department's commitment to holding people accountable and bringing justice to the victims of violent crime,” Goldstein said. “Today, we send another message that we will stop at nothing to bring accountability to those who we believe put our community at risk.”