NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – A previously convicted felon pleaded guilty today to his role in a violent carjacking.
According to the statement of facts filed with the plea agreement, Mark Anthony Johnson, 35, arrived at a convenience store on Shell Road in Hampton with two other vehicles in the evening of Nov. 20, 2016. Johnson got out of his car and brandished an AR-15 assault rifle at two individuals as he approached the store. He entered the store, brandished his rifle at the store clerk, then exited the store. After he exited the store, he pointed his rifle at the carjacking victim. Another vehicle that arrived with Johnson blocked the victim’s vehicle from exiting the parking lot. Johnson removed the victim from the victim’s vehicle at gunpoint, and struck the man with his rifle. The victim was forced to the ground, and a group of individuals, including Johnson, kicked the victim. The passenger of Johnson’s vehicle drove off in the victim’s car.
Johnson, who is currently on federal supervised release, pleaded guilty to carjacking and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence. He will be sentenced on December 4, and faces a maximum penalty of 15 years for the carjacking, and a mandatory minimum of 7 years and a maximum penalty of life for brandishing the firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence. The latter sentence will be served consecutive to the former. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, Michael B. Boxler, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF) Washington Field Division, and Terry L. Sult, Chief of Hampton Police Division, made the announcement after Senior U.S. District Judge Robert G. Doumar accepted the plea. Assistant U.S. Attorney Megan M. Cowles is prosecuting the case.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information is located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 4:17-cr-51.
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Eastern District of Virginia