Real Name: Peter Douglas Johnston
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Date: May 14, 1990
Details: On May 14, 1990, at 11 pm, thirty-five-year-old Doug Johnston left for his night shift at a computer graphics company. An hour later, he was found shot to death in his car in the company parking lot. He had been shot behind his left ear from a distance of at least twelve inches. At first, authorities believed that Doug's death was a suicide. However, Doug was right-handed, there was no powder residue on his hands, and most importantly, there was no gun found at the scene.
For unknown reasons, authorities have not determined that his death was either a suicide or a homicide. His family and friends are convinced that his death was a homicide. They do not believe he would have committed suicide because he had just finished school and gotten a new job. He was also very close to his family and friends.
Interestingly, Doug Johnston had a similar house and drove a similar car to Don Devereux. Devereux lived across the street from the parking lot where Doug was killed. Devereux is a journalist whose work was allegedly a threat to mob figures in Phoenix. Devereux was also investigating the suspicious death of Charles Morgan.
Charles, who worked for an escrow company, had first vanished in March of 1977, and later returned to his home claiming that he had been abducted and drugged. Charles told his wife that he had worked for the federal government and that his abductors had taken his identification. Then, in June of 1977, Charles vanished once again. He was found shot to death eleven days later; ironically, he was wearing a bullet proof vest. Shortly after Charles was found dead, two men claiming to be government officials went to the Morgan home and ransacked the house looking for something unknown.
Charles's case was aired on Unsolved Mysteries and after the broadcast, Devereux followed up on several leads. He learned that Charles Morgan was involved in money laundering relating to his escrow company. He was also involved in gold and platinum transactions. Most of the gold came out of Southeast Asia at the end of the Vietnam War. Devereux believes that Charles was killed because he knew too much and that he needed to be silenced. Devereux discovered that Charles kept duplicate records of the illegal transactions and that he was probably killed for these records.
In 1991, Devereux was contacted by a writer from Washington, D.C., named Danny Casolaro. Devereux agreed to share with Dan the information that he had uncovered about Charles's money laundering and gold transactions. However, before Devereux could even mail his research, Dan Casolaro was found dead. He was found with his wrists slashed in a hotel bathroom. His death was ruled a suicide, but Devereux believes that Dan was murdered. According to Dan's brother, he was very squeamish and afraid of blood. It would seem unlikely, then, that he would choose to commit suicide by slashing his wrists.
Six months after Dan's death, Devereux learned from another journalist that there was a hit placed on him, but that Doug Johnston was mistakenly killed as a result. Devereux also learned that there were apparently other people that wanted him dead. A CIA official and an an informant for Israeli Intelligence confirmed the death threats to Devereux.
Devereux is now certain that Doug was mistakenly killed as a result of a botched hit that was meant for him. Doug's murder, along with the deaths of Charles Morgan and Dan Casolaro, remain unsolved.
Suspects: Many believe that Devereux was targeted for his investigation in the Charles Morgan case.
Extra Notes: This segment originally aired on the May 6, 1992 episode of Unsolved Mysteries. Charles Morgan's segment originally aired on the February 7, 1990 episode. Danny Casolaro's segment would later air on the March 10, 1993 episode.
- Doug Johnston at Find a Grave
- Kin angry, unsure over violent death of 'happiest man'
- Reddit discussion post on Doug's case