Skip to main content

Cleveland Woman ‘on the Run for Over a Month’ in Thanksgiving Day Murder Case Allegedly Bragged About the Shooting on Social Media


Katia Chappell during her arraignment

A Cleveland woman who allegedly killed another woman on Thanksgiving Day last year also allegedly went on to boast about committing the fatal crime on social media, prosecutors say.

Katia Chappell, 28, stands accused of aggravated murder, murder, attempted murder, felonious assault, tampering with evidence and carrying concealed weapons for the incident that is said to have occurred during the early morning hours on Nov. 25, 2021.

During that incident, two women were shot inside of a car behind a Target just before 2:30 a.m. on the holiday in question. One of those women, a 23-year-old who is not being named, survived, while 29-year-old Dominique Johnson succumbed to her injuries.

The claim about the defendant’s allegedly braggadocious behavior was made during a court hearing as the defense and state grappled over whether Chappell was entitled to bail. And if so, how high it should be.

The details of those alleged brags, however, were not divulged.

“Your honor, she has no record whatsoever,” defense attorney Michael Peterson argued during a Wednesday arraignment that was televised, in part, by local CBS affiliate WOIO. “She is four months pregnant. And she needs some medical care because of that.”

The defense request for $100,000 bail was ultimately not granted.

“She was on the run for over a month,” an attorney with the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s office argued in response–proving, in the end, to have the upper hand. “She was also posting on social media.”

Chappell actually attempted to interject in open court when the state’s attorney brought up the social media allegations.

“Umm, can I,” the defendant interjected, “Can I say something?”

Judge Kathleen Ann Sutula advised Chappell not to do so, on the basis that it would likely be used against her by the prosecution. The defendant then demurred and took the court’s advice.

Bond was set at $1 million in the form of cash, surety or property.

In the event Chappell can make bond, the judge also determined that she is not to have any contact with her alleged surviving victim, or with the family members of either alleged victim.

According to records reviewed by Law&Crime, the court also ordered that Chappell must submit to “a DNA specimen collection procedure administered by the sheriff within 24 hours.”

Chappell was arrested in early January after the U.S. Marshal service and Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force conducted a weeks-long hunt for her at the request of the Cleveland Division of Police.

“The need to locate and arrest violent individuals like this is paramount to keeping our community safe,” U.S. Marshal Pete Elliott alleged at the time of her arrest. “The fact someone could so carelessly take a life can never be overlooked. The diligent work of our officers and task force partners should be commended. Our hope is the victim’s family can find some peace with this arrest.”

Earlier this month, Chappell was indicted on two counts of murder, one count of aggravated murder, one count of attempted murder, four counts of felonious assault, one count of tampering with evidence and one count of carrying concealed weapons.

Her first pretrial appearance is currently slated for Feb. 24, 2022.

[image via screengrab/WOIO]

Have a tip we should know? [email protected]

Filed Under:

Follow Law&Crime: