Orlando Johnson’s mother was killed when he was a young child. He has kept the memory of her alive by climbing the NBA ladder.
His social media posts paid tribute to Vicki, whose Cold Case Killing has confounded her family since 1991.
Nick Borges, the Seaside Police Chief in California, told Fox News Digital that Johnson’s family was “grateful for the solution” to the mystery.
The 6-foot-5 inch player, who is now 34 years old — the same age his mother was when she died — is currently in his 11th season as a professional NBA.
Johnson’s four-year NBA career began with the Sacramento Kings, who drafted him out of UC Santa Barbara in 2012. He was then traded to the Indiana Pacers, and spent time in Milwaukee, Phoenix, and New Orleans. He has represented teams from China, Russia Australia, Taiwan, Bosnia, and the Philippines.
Johnson plays for Uruguay’s Club Atletico Aguada (commonly known as “Aguada”).
The seasoned player had a harrowing childhood. According to Monterey County Weekly, six years after the death of Johnson’s mother, a space-heater in his childhood home ignited the Christmas decorations and killed his great grandmother, aunt, and two cousins, while he was visiting his half-brother.
Seven family members died between 1989-1995, including Johnson’s grandmother, her primary caregiver. She died from a heartattack.
Johnson posted photos of his grandmother and mother to Instagram for Mother’s Day in 2019. In 2020, on the birthday of his late mother, Johnson posted photos to Instagram that would be distributed to media outlets later to announce her killer’s identity.
A photo of Johnson, a 1-year old boy smiling on his mother’s shoulder was shown next to a recent photograph taken at the gravesite.
Johnson wrote: “Looking to have one of our heart-to-hearts and bring you some flowers upon my return,” Your boys love you and miss you. Your family is always thinking of you and missing.
Chief Borges was only 10 years old when Vicki was murdered and was raised about one mile from the site where her body had been found. He said it was an honor to inform her player and family of her killer’s identity.
Borges told Fox News Digital that “they were very grateful.” I could tell from talking to them that they were struggling to process the enormity of what happened.
He said, “Orlando…is a local hero who came from a difficult situation to become a star athlete.” “Their (family’s) story is tragic and challenging… but roses can grow out of concrete!”
Johnson’s family was not immediately available for comment on this story.
Borges stated that Seaside, California was a “tough city” with “a few very serious psychopaths.” In 1991, there were 10 murders. Vicki Johnson, however, was addicted to crack cocaine, and her murder was “shocking.”
He said that the majority of murders were gang-related shootings. “To have an elderly woman attacked and then set on fire was a new level.”
The mother of three was determined to fight off her attacker. Investigators took samples of the killer’s skin under her fingernails.
According to FBI statistics, these samples will be tested in 2021 against the Combined DNA Index System. is a 1998 database that contains DNA profiles for nearly 16,000,000 offenders.
Frank Lewis McClure was identified this week as the match. He had committed a number of violent crimes. He died in his Seaside house in 2021, aged 77, from natural causes. Police could not charge him.
Borges stated, “I think that his arrogance and confidence that the case wouldn’t be solved was demonstrated by the fact that he had remained in Seaside for all of those years.” “I’m outraged McClure was comfortable enough in Seaside to continue committing crimes.”
Data shared by Seaside Police Department with Fox News Digital shows that McClure was arrested in 1990 for possession of drug paraphernalia and resisting police. He also faced charges of assault with serious injury to the body, assault using a deadly weapon, and domestic violence. The number convictions is not known.
In 1991, he had been arrested twice. Once for domestic violence, and then again for assault using a deadly weapon.
Borges stated that “Assaults and domestic violence cases are serious but [all McClure’s] case were personal – there was no connection between McClure and Ms. Johnson.”
McClure was sentenced to four years in prison for violating his probation and felony in 1994, according to Borges. He was arrested twice more for domestic violence in 1999 and 2011, before his death.
Borges stated that despite McClure’s violent past, McClure, his family, and the community were familiar and liked — “those of us who knew him would never have suspected he would do such a violent, disgusting act.”
He said: “I’m sure detectives and officers tried to gather as much information in those days, but justice for murder victims was far more important than the code of silence in this small community.”
Borges, who said that there were 32 unsolved murders at Seaside after McClure was identified as Vicki Johnson’s killer by police, has now revealed that McClure is the killer of Vicki Johnson.
Orlando Johnson’s rise to NBA
Johnson’s half-brothers, who survived his mother’s death and the loss of the family that surrounded him, were the ones who pushed him to achieve success on the court. According to the Monterey County Weekly, one brother, Jamell, raised him after the death of their grandmother. Another brother, Robbie took over as a coach.
Robbie told the magazine that “a lot of Orlando’s events go beyond disappointment.” “It makes him patient.” He has never received anything. All of his possessions were earned. He had to work hard for everything. “He had to fight hard for everything.”
Johnson told the outlet that his family, and in particular his grandmother, was his primary motivation.
Johnson said, “She raised my aunts, uncles and brothers and didn’t let any of the challenges and tribulations stop her from providing for us.” “Watching her hustle, watching her work, makes me want to be just as good as she is.” “If I can achieve that, I will be very happy in my life.”