Walgreens Worker Allegedly Killed Teen in Break Room

Victim Riley Whitelaw, 17, complained about co-worker Joshua Johnson for a year
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 16, 2022 10:45 AM CDT
Walgreens Worker Allegedly Killed Teen in Break Room
The Walgreens logo on the front of a store on July 14, 2021, in Cambridge, Mass.   (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

(Newser) – A teenage Walgreens employee who reported her co-worker to her boss for making her feel uncomfortable was allegedly killed by that same co-worker in the store's break room. A manager at the store in Colorado Springs called 911 just before 7pm Saturday, saying he'd found a body in the break room with "blood everywhere," reports the Denver Post. Officers arrived to find Riley Whitelaw, 17, dead on the floor. The man now held on suspicion of her murder is 28-year-old co-worker Joshua Johnson, whom Whitelaw complained last year "had made advances toward her," according to an affidavit.

Told to "keep things professional," Johnson "appeared to be receptive," court documents read, per FOX21. Still, Whitelaw asked a manager for shifts that would allow her to avoid him. She reportedly asked again just a few weeks ago. A manager noted Johnson "appeared to be acting jealous" after Whitelaw's boyfriend got a job at Walgreens this spring, per FOX21 and KKTV. But managers say Whitelaw also requested additional hours and knew that meant she'd be working alongside Johnson. Their paths allegedly crossed Saturday in the break room, where Johnson was observed stacking boxes to obstruct the view of a surveillance camera, per the affidavit.

Police found paper taped over the windows of the room, where a closed sign had been put up, in addition to "significant blood stains on the floor, cabinets and counter," the affidavit reads, per FOX21. A teenage customer later told investigators she'd heard a woman screaming and the sound of stalls slamming around 5:45pm. Johnson—arrested without incident Sunday after he was found walking along an interstate nearly 100 miles from Colorado Springs, per KKTV—had scratches on his hands and face, per the affidavit. He claimed he'd gotten over his crush on Whitelaw but "fell in the blood" in the break room, then went home to clean up, according to documents. (Read more murder stories.)

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