FREEHOLD – A Neptune Township man has pleaded guilty to a charge of first degree Aggravated Manslaughter for his role in the fatal April 2016 shooting at a township Veterans of Foreign Wars post following a funeral repast, announced Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni.

Calvin Johnson, 42, of Neptune Township, pleaded guilty Tuesday to first degree Aggravated Manslaughter before Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Richard W. English.

The charges stem from an April 18, 2016 shooting that occurred in the parking lot of the VFW located at 1515 Corlies Avenue in Neptune Township. 

As part of the plea agreement, the State will recommend a sentence of twenty years in a New Jersey State Prison, subject to the provisions of the “No Early Release Act” (NERA) requiring him to serve 85 percent of the sentence imposed before becoming eligible for release on parole. Johnson would also be subject to Parole Supervision for five years upon completion of his prison term. The plea agreement was made after consultation with the victim’s family.

At approximately 8 p.m. on April 18, 2016, officers from the Neptune Township Police Department were on patrol when they heard the sound of gunshots coming from the area of the VFW Post.  Upon their arrival, officers noted a large crowd and discovered the victim, Corey Basden, 33, of Neptune City, lying in the rear parking lot with multiple gunshot wounds.  MONOC paramedics responded to the scene, and Basden was pronounced deceased at 8:15 p.m.  

An 18-month-long joint investigation by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office and the Neptune Township Police Department identified Johnson, a/k/a “Little C,” as Basden’s killer.

Johnson is scheduled to appear in Superior Court for sentencing before Judge Richard W. English on June 21, 2019. 

The case is assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutors Matthew Bogner and Paul Alexander.

Johnson is represented by Paul E. Zager Esq., of Freehold

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