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'Her love was her children' | DC police charge 30-year-old man with murder after mother of 6 found shot, stabbed on I-295

Portia Pleasant learned of the body that was found along I-295 after seeing news on social media. Later on, she found out about the tragic connection to her sister

WASHINGTON — A 32-year-old woman is dead after she was found shot and stabbed on Interstate 295 near the Whitney Young Memorial Bridge Saturday morning. A 30-year-old man has been arrested and charged in connection with her death. 

A Sunday news release from DC Police specified that the woman ultimately died from gunshot wounds, however, she did have stab wounds at the time of her death as well.

Police say officers initially received a report of the stabbing around 11:17 a.m. When officers arrived on the scene, they found a woman suffering from stab wounds, who was not conscious or breathing. She was taken to an area hospital for treatment of her injuries. She was pronounced dead a short time later. 

MPD identified the woman as 32-year-old Passion Pleasant of Northeast, D.C.

On Sunday, her sister spoke to WUSA9 and described Pleasant as a nurturing mother to six children.

"Her love was her children. She lived for her children," said Portia Pleasant. "She was a powerhouse of a mother. She was raising her children and doing a lot of things on her own."

Pleasant said she learned of the body that was found along I-295 after seeing news reports on social media.

Later on, she found out about the tragic connection to her sister.

Gregory Johnson, 30, of Southeast D.C. was arrested Saturday and charged with second-degree murder while armed. 

On Sunday as a result of an autopsy, the DC Office of the Chief Medical Examiner determined the cause of death to be from gunshot wounds. The manner of death was ruled a homicide.

Metropolitan Police Department officers temporarily closed the southbound lanes of the highway from the Whitney Young Memorial Bridge/East Capitol Street on ramp to the Pennsylvania Avenue exit due to their investigation.

Pleasant told WUSA 9 that Johnson and her sister had been in a relationship for a few years before the weekend crime. 

Investigators believe the homicide was domestic in nature, which Pleasant said she was not shocked about.

Pleasant alleged that Johnson was abusive toward her sister, despite putting on a much different persona around her family. 

"He came across to us as charming and charismatic. From what I know, in the beginning, he was a light to her life and the kids," she said. "As time went on, I came to learn that he became very abusive to her.”

Moving forward, Pleasant told WUSA9 that she hoped to broaden her sister's legacy by helping domestic violence victims in the region.

"It’s a very underrated and swept under the rug subject and it commonly happens," she said. "It’s not talked about like it should be. I have to be an advocate for my sister.” 

If you or a loved one is in need of help, DC SAFE is a 24/7 crisis intervention agency for domestic violence. You do not need an appointment or ID to speak with a DC SAFE Advocate. All services are free and confidential. Please click here for resources. 

The DC Coalition Against Domestic Violence (DCCADV) is a federally-recognized statewide coalition of organizations and groups that are available to help with everything from food, clothes, or address confidentiality to child services and job training. Click here for more information.

If you cannot find the resources you need in the previous links, or you are in crisis, please call the 24-hour National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or TTY 1-800-787-3224.

The investigation is ongoing. Anyone who may have more information about this stabbing should call 202-727-9099 or text the department's tip line at 50411.

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