Subscribe for 99¢
Darnacio Johnson

Darnacio Johnson, of Belleville, Ill., was charged June 20, 2019 with attempted first-degree murder, aggravated discharge of a firearm, aggravated battery to a peace officer, possession of a stolen vehicle, and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. Photo via St. Clair County State’s Attorney’s Office

ST. CLAIR COUNTY • A Belleville man faces allegations that he shot at one Swansea police officer and bit another after being apprehended in a stolen car, according to charges filed Thursday.

Darnacio Johnson, 19, listed in court documents as a homeless man from Belleville is charged with attempted first-degree murder, aggravated discharge of a firearm, aggravated battery to a peace officer, possession of a stolen vehicle, and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.

Johnson is accused of firing a semi-automatic pistol at close range in the direction of Swansea police detective Gary Reuter. He is also is accused of biting Swansea officer Andrew Hewitt on the arm, according to the charges. 

The confrontation began about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday when officers with the O'Fallon, Ill. and Shiloh police departments began tracking a stolen vehicle through the car's On-Star GPS tracking, police said. The tracker eventually led them to the area of Rand Lane in Swansea, according to a statement from Swansea police Chief Steven Johnson.

Police from several Metro East departments then converged on the vehicle, and, police say, Johnson got out of the car and took off running, leaving a woman passenger.

Eventually a Swansea police officer chased Johnson on foot to the 3200 block of Rand Lane, police said. When the officer attempted to make an arrest, police said Johnson fired a shot, and a Swansea officer then returned fire.

At one point in the struggle, police allege Johnson bit another officer on the arm.

Soon more officers arrived and took Johnson into custody. 

Johnson and the two officers were taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries, police said. 

Johnson's bail was set at $1 million, and he was in custody Thursday at the St. Clair County Jail.