Fugitive wanted in Burlco murder is caught

Zedrick Johnson
Zedrick Johnson
Posted: February 23, 2013

A fugitive charged in a Burlington County robbery spree that left a gas station attendant dead was captured Friday in Camden, authorities said.

The 11-day manhunt for Zedrick Johnson, 34, ended at 7:45 a.m. when members of a U.S. Marshals Service fugitive task force tracked him down to a crack house on the 100 block of North 23d Street, officials said.

Johnson's spree began early Feb. 11, when he robbed the Lukoil station on Route 130 at Chesterton Road in Willingboro, police said.

Before fleeing with cash from the till, Johnson beat and killed the attendant, Bal Krishna Karki, 46, an immigrant from Nepal, authorities said. A customer found Karki's body about 2:30 a.m.

The next day, Johnson walked into the Sunny Food Mart on Van Sciver Parkway in Willingboro about 9:45 a.m., put his hand in his pocket as though he had a gun, and demanded cash, authorities said. He fled in the cashier's car.

On Wednesday, police said, Johnson entered the National Fuel station on Route 130 at Tenby Chase Drive armed with a knife and announced a robbery. He fled with cash after punching an attendant in the face.

On Friday morning, that attendant, Parshotam Singh, sat behind the counter in the gas station office, his left eye blackened and swollen.

"This guy come in and say, 'Give me money,' " Singh said. "This guy have something in his hand and punch me."

Informed later of Johnson's arrest, Singh said he was happy to hear the news.

"The public can be relieved that [Johnson] is off the street," Burlington County Prosecutor Robert Bernardi said in a statement.

Charged with murder and robbery before his apprehension, Johnson will have a first appearance in Burlington County Superior Court on Monday.

Johnson, of Willingboro, is no stranger to the law, according to state records.

He was released from state prison a year ago after spending nearly eight years behind bars for a robbery involving bodily injury or force, five counts of burglary, and one count of child abuse. The crimes occurred in October 2002.

Contact Joseph Gambardello at 856-779-3844 or jgambardello@phillynews.com.

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