A Cajun Navy volunteer who claimed she was attacked in a parking lot of a Lake Charles shopping center last month was recently arrested after police found many inconsistencies in her story, Police Chief Shawn Caldwell said at a press conference Monday.
Rebecca Johnson was arrested July 16 and booked into the Calcasieu Correctional Center on one count of filing and maintaining a false public record. The arrest stems from her claiming she was attacked June 21 at the Albertson's parking lot, located at the 4000 block of Ryan Street.
Caldwell said officers responded to a 911 call from an associate of Johnson’s, who was not at the scene when the incident occurred. The associate told officers that Johnson was pulled from her vehicle and attacked by two white males who fled in an extended cab white pickup truck. The attack was said to have occurred because Johnson was serving meals to the Black community through her role with the Cajun Navy Ground Force, Caldwell said.
Deputy Chief Frank Fondel said Johnson was arrested after detectives used video surveillance to establish a timeline of her movement. Also, various statements obtained during the investigation “revealed multiple inconsistencies in the information Johnson provided in her original victim’s statement and follow up interviews,” he said.
“Johnson’s account of what occurred did not line up with the evidence gathered by our investigators,” Caldwell said. “Of all the video we looked at, we were not able to find a single shred of video evidence of attackers, nor were we able to locate a witness who saw the attack.”
Caldwell said Johnson suffered injuries, but he is unsure of a motive. He said he has no reason to believe the Cajun Navy was involved in the incident.
When officers arrived at the scene, they treated the incident as if a rape may have occurred, but an attempted rape was never formally alleged, Caldwell said.
Judge David Ritchie set Johnson’s bond at $25,000. Caldwell said Johnson has since bonded out, and the investigation is ongoing.