Billings murder defendant arrested in Nevada, returned to Yellowstone County

Posted at 11:13 AM, Jun 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-17 13:13:35-04
Gregory Scott Green (Yellowstone County Detention Facility photo)


BILLINGS – A man arrested in Nevada two months ago in the case of a missing Billings woman believed to have been murdered has been returned to Billings.

Yellowstone County jail records show Gregory Scott Green was booked into the jail on Sunday on a charge of deliberate homicide.

Green, 54, was arrested April 17 in Henderson, Nev., after prosecutors linked him to the disappearance of Laura Johnson, who was last seen alive in Billings on Sept. 13, 2018.

The murder charge against Green was filed in Yellowstone County. It was not immediately clear when Green would make his first court appearance in Yellowstone County District Court.

According to charging documents, Johnson moved to Billings a couple of months prior to her disappearance with Green. Her family has said she moved to be with her boyfriend, Green.

In multiple interviews with detectives, Green said Johnson had taken her belongings out of their home and left him. He told investigators he thought she may have moved back to Oregon with her family.

On Oct. 5, detectives met with the couple’s neighbor, who had security camera footage going back to September.

Footage from the night of Sept. 14 showed Green carrying what appeared to be a heavy object “cradle style” out of his garage.

Documents state the object was covered in a blanket and was consistent with the size and shape of a body.

Footage showed Green carrying the object outside and placing it in his work truck.

Investigators also noticed that Green started a small fire toward the rear of the pickup on the driveway. They also saw him place a shovel in the bed of the vehicle.

A time stamp on the footage showed that Green left the residence at 7 p.m. and did not return until just before 10:30 p.m.

After reviewing the footage, detectives asked Green to come to the station for an interview on Oct. 5.

Court documents state that Green downplayed his relationship with Johnson. He told detectives that Johnson had been going to a recovery clinic for addiction issues. He told investigators that on Sept. 12 or 13, he had returned from work and Johnson was gone. He said that she had taken her belongings with her.

When asked directly if he was involved in Johnson’s disappearance, Green said “absolutely not.”

Detectives told Green they had reviewed surveillance video and that what the video showed was inconsistent with his story. He told detectives, “I ain’t gonna say nothing else.”

Green was allowed to leave the station, and his work truck was seized pending a search warrant.

Detectives also received a warrant for the couple’s home and found that the carpet in the back bedroom was “very new.”

On Oct. 6, detectives were alerted that Green’s other vehicle, a Buick, was moving westbound on I-90.  Detectives traced the car through a tracker that had been placed on the vehicle and saw the Buick arrived in Henderson, Nev., after traveling through the night.

Meanwhile, detectives continued their investigation. They found a few small blood stains in the truck that were sent to the crime lab for DNA testing. According to court documents, the blood taken from Green’s truck was that of a female. Testing concluded that the blood is very likely to have come from the biological child of Johnson’s parents than from anyone else.

Through other surveillance video from the night of Sept. 14, detectives were able to track the movements of the work truck in which they believe Green had Johnson’s body.

The car traveled from the residence through Laurel and onto Highway 212 toward the Yellowstone River Bridge.

Detectives have repeatedly searched the areas south of Laurel to attempt to find the location of Johnson’s body or burial site.  No clues have been found, and Johnson has not been located.

Johnson’s disappearance was first reported after family members became worried when she didn’t show up to work and stopped communicating with them. They took to social media to alert residents about her disappearance.

Police asked for the public’s help in locating a white Chevy truck that was traveling across the Yellowstone River Bridge south of Laurel the night of Sept. 14, believing it was related to the case.