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Earl Lee Johnson Jr. (center) escorted by Baton Rouge police.

Earl Lee Johnson (center).

A man choked, beat, and stabbed a woman to death in a killing broadcast on Facebook Live, according to police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Earl Lee Johnson Jr., 35, faces a count of first-degree murder for allegedly killing Janice David, 34. Local police say they learned about the homicide after already arresting the man for stealing a car.

According to officers, David was found dead in a vehicle at 3636 South Sherwood Forest Boulevard around 9:52 p.m. Monday night. State police told the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office of a Facebook Live video in which a man stabbed a woman. Deputies found the vehicle, cops said.

“Baton Rouge Police Officers arrested EARL LEE JOHNSON JR, 35, 12615 BRITIAN DR yesterday evening around 5:25pm prior to being aware of his involvement in David’s murder,” cops wrote.

Johnson was initially arrested for stealing a vehicle, authorities said. He was charged with theft of a motor vehicle, and aggravated flight form an officer.

Police think Johnson and David used drugs heavily over several days before the murder, spokesman Lt. L’Jean McKneely told The New Orleans Advocate. He cited evidence including Johnson speaking to police.

Someone saw video of the attack from Facebook Live, and told Facebook, he said. The company then told Louisiana State Police. McKneely called the alleged murder a “very gruesome, very evil act” in which Johnson choked, beat, and stabbed David. He then tried to set the car on fire, McKneely said.

The autopsy is reportedly pending.

As for the other charges, a resident reported the car stolen before 5 p.m. on Monday, the lieutenant said. Johnson led officers on a short chase, he said.

[Image via Baton Rouge Police Department]

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