‘TJ was an amazing person’: Charlestown sergeant dies from COVID-19 complications

TeJuan Johnson had been with the Charlestown Police Department for 13 years at his time of death.

CHARLESTOWN, Ind. — A sergeant with the Charlestown Police Department has died from coronavirus complications, the department announced on Facebook Wednesday.

TeJuan Johnson had been with the department for 13 years, working as a narcotics detective, shift commander, bike patrol and field training officer.

“Please keep his family and his brothers and sisters at the Charlestown Police Department in his thoughts and prayers,” the post read.

During an escort to Grayson Funeral Home, people lined the streets to pay their respects. Andrea Stuthers, a local healthcare worker and member of the community said he added so much to this community.

“TJ was an amazing person, an amazing asset to the whole community,” Stuthers said. “His smile. His warm, fun, kind, smile, he just always had that on no matter what.”

She was one of the dozens of people who felt the need to show their support in town today, after their friend, colleague and neighbor battled with COVID for three weeks.

“He would be willing to help anyone in the community with anything. He would take his shirt off his back for anybody,” Stuthers said.

Police chief Tim Wolff said it’s been a really tough week. Their town has been through a lot of two years. Ten days from now marks the anniversary of another unexpected sergeants’ death.

“Two line of duty deaths in a small city, small agency like this, in two years is really tragic,” Wolff said. 

The city is also honoring their lost hero. In the city center, Johnson’s badge number is bright in lights. The mayor of Charlestown, Treva Hodges, said it will stay lit up until he is laid to rest.

“I grieve with the family. I grieve with our police department,” Hodges said. “TJ wasn’t just our detective. TJ was a permanent fixture around Charlestown.”

State health officials have continued to report high daily cases, hospitalizations and deaths in Indiana. On Tuesday, the Indiana State Department of Health reported 142 deaths. More than 90 more deaths were reported Wednesday.

The Clark County Health Department has a mobile COVID-19 testing unit available at the Charlestown Family Activities Park every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Appointments can be made here.

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