An Atascadero man who allegedly stalked, harassed or threatened numerous women skipped court and fled to Nevada but was tracked down and caught by a local bounty hunter. [KSBY]
Josiah James Johnstone, 34, had pleaded guilty to stalking and criminal threats. About two months ago, Johnstone was out on bond and did not show up for his court date. A judge then issued a warrant.
On July 31, the SLO County Sheriff’s Office named Johnson its Most Wanted Wednesday suspect.
Earlier this month, bounty hunter Richard Dunbar caught Johnstone in Nevada. Dunbar said Johnstone also threatened him after initially indicating he was going to surrender himself.
Johnstone has reportedly threatened men in attempts to obtain money, in addition to threatening women.
On Tuesday, Johnstone appeared in San Luis Obispo Superior Court, where a group of his alleged victims gathered as well. Nearly 10 women showed up at Johnstone’s court hearing.
Susannah Fletcher of Santa Margarita said, years ago, Johnstone threatened her when she tried to break up with him. Johnstone said he would come to her house and burn it down with her mother inside it if she left him and if she called the police, Fletcher said.
Shaana Keller, a resident of Vallejo in the Bay Area, said Johnstone guilted her into letting him crash on her couch. Johnstone targets women and manipulates them for a place to stay, sex, money and their sympathies, Keller said.
Prosecutors are considering adding charges to Johnstone’s case. A judge denied Johnstone bail on Tuesday, and he remains in the SLO County Jail.