Paterson Fires Ex-Aide at Center of Abuse Scandal

Gov. David Paterson has fired his former top aide and bodyguard, more than nine months after suspending him during a domestic violence scandal that nearly brought down the governor.

State Comptroller's Office records show that David Johnson has been off the state payroll since Nov. 19.

Johnson, was suspended from his post last February amid allegations he had abused his girlfriend. He was arrested in August on misdemeanor assault charges stemming from the incident.

It was Halloween 2009 when Johnson allegedly beat and choked  then girlfriend Sherr-una Booker. Questions have swirled if Gov. David Paterson, Johnson and state police officials engaged in actions to try to silence her.  Johnson denies any wrongdoing.  The Governor admits he called Booker but has denied it was an attempt to silence her.  He told investigators such allegations were "bogus."

The case was initially handled in Family Court and dropped without prejudice because Booker did not appear for a hearing.

 See a timeline of the events.

Paterson's involvement in the case, including the phone call to Booker, caused him serious political damage.  However, investigators found no evidence of witness tampering.

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