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Greensboro man pleads not guilty to murder

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NEWPORT — A Greensboro man entered not guilty pleas to charges of second-degree murder and manslaughter, following a shooting incident that took place on October 20.

Daryl Johnson is accused of killing 27-year-old Robert Chaplin, of East Hardwick, and was ordered to be held without bail after appearing in Orleans County Superior criminal court in Newport on Monday.

The series of events that led to the shooting began at the Hardwick Kwik Stop & Deli when a store clerk called the Hardwick Police Department after Chaplin was denied service to purchase alcohol because he was deemed too intoxicated.

Johnson intervened in the dispute between Chaplin and the store clerk, and by the time police arrived at the store, Chaplin was gone.

According to the affidavit, Johnson told the responding officer that Chaplin told him he knew where he lived and would be going to his home to “deal with him” later that night.

Johnson told the Hardwick police officer that if Chaplin showed up at his house, he would shoot him.

The affidavit states that Johnson is seen on surveillance footage shoving Chaplin through the store’s door, and around to the back parking lot.

At no point at the store can Chaplin be seen acting in a physically assaultive manner, police say.

About 90 minutes later, Chaplin arrived at Johnson’s home on Eligo Lake Road, in Greensboro, and the altercation ensued.

According to the affidavit, when Chaplin arrived Johnson grabbed a .22-caliber pistol and a spotlight and went outside and told him to leave, shining the spotlight in his face and warning him he had a gun.

Johnson told police that Chaplin pushed open the door of his vehicle and lunged at him.

He allegedly shot him in the chest and arm.

Chaplin was unarmed.

The affidavit states that Johnson is quoted as saying “It was totally self-defense. I was in fear for my life, especially from what happened earlier. He’s lucky I didn’t bring my shotgun.”

Court records state that Johnson and Chaplin knew each other, and the two worked together at one point at Gravel Construction.

The second-degree murder charge alleges that Johnson acted with an intent to kill, do great bodily harm, or with a wanton disregard for the likelihood death or great bodily harm would result.

The maximum penalty second-degree murder carries is up to life in prison, and manslaughter not less than one year in jail and no more than 15 years.

Johnson can only be convicted on one of the charges.

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