Family of woman who was murdered hopes her heartbreaking story may help domestic violence victims

CLEVELAND - A manhunt remains under way for a Cleveland man wanted in connection with the murder of a Cleveland Heights mother.

The body of Miriam Johnson was discovered last week in a garbage can in a vacant home.

Johnson's family reacted Thursday to news that Cleveland Heights police issued an arrest warrant for her ex-boyfriend, Yaphet Bradley, 35, who is also the father of three of Johnson's four children.

"We are obviously heartbroken by the loss of Miriam and deeply troubled by the disgusting acts of those responsible. Those who knew Miriam remember how bright and cheerful she was; we remember her smile," said Nathan Johnson, Miriam's brother. "Miriam loved her children and her family and despite her challenges, that love was inspiring her to try to put her life together. We are thankful that her children are safe and are with those who love them," he continued.

Investigators contend that Bradley stabbed, shot and killed Miriam Johnson last month. The family of the 31-year-old had reported her missing, and then last week her body was found in Cleveland.

Police say her death was the final chapter in a long history of abuse at the hands of Bradley.

"He has two prior felony convictions, from what I learned that he had assaulted her. She sustained severe injuries and he served some considerable time for those convictions," said Captain Chris Britton.

Britton said Bradley is a very dangerous person.  If you have any information on Bradley, please contact Cleveland Heights police or the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force at 1-866-4WANTED or Text keyword WANTED and tip to 847411 (tip411). Tipsters can remain anonymous.

Cleveland Heights police say one of the major breaks came when they were able to identify a friend of the murder suspect, who is accused of hiding Miriam Johnson's body in the vacant house in Cleveland. Calvin Young, 24, faces charges that include abuse of a corpse and tampering with evidence.

Johnson's family is hoping victims of domestic violence can learn from her heartbreaking story.

"We hope that Miriam can be honored by an increased love and compassion, and an increased awareness of those who are threatened by violence and entrapped in abusive relationships," Nathan Johnson said.

**Continuing coverage**