New Orleans street performer to be extradited to Florida on murder charge

Johnie Lewis Miller charged in 1974 killing of Freddie Farah

Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office booking photo of Johnie Miller (left) and Project Cold Case photo of Freddie Farah (right)

NEW ORLEANS - A New Orleans street performer known as Uncle Louie will be extradited to face charges in a deadly convenience store robbery that occurred 43 years ago in Jacksonville.

Online records show Orleans Parish Magistrate Judge Harry Cantrell was presented Tuesday with extradition papers signed by Gov. John Bel Edwards. Cantrell then ordered Uncle Louie, whose real name is Johnie Miller, to be transported to face second-degree murder and armed robbery charges.

Edwards' order was necessary after Miller refused to voluntarily return to face the charges stemming from a 1974 case involving the death of 34-year-old Freddie Farah. The 60-year-old Miller was linked to the slaying after fingerprint evidence matched an FBI profile and helped connect cold case detectives to him.

“We're relieved. Some of us never thought we'd see this day,” Farah's son, Bobby Farah, said at a news conference in May with Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams. “I wasn't totally shocked. I've always had this feeling that someone was out there that was responsible, and I wanted to find out who that person could be.”

The Times-Picayune reported that Miller was represented in court Tuesday and at a previous hearing by New Orleans defense attorney Aubrey Harris, who said last month she was representing him pro bono. Harris, who knew Miller from his street performance act, said funds have been raised to pay for Jacksonville criminal defense attorney, Ann Finnell.

Johnie Lewis Miller, known in New Orleans as "Uncle Louie." (Background photo courtesy Barry Newman)

"There is a lot of support, friends and family," Harris said after the June hearing.

Miller has performed in the French Quarter as a human statue for more than two decades. People frequently take pictures with him and his miniature stuffed dog, Little Willie.

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