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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, September 24, 2013

District Man Sentenced To More Than 14 Years In Prison For Fatally Stabbing Woman In Southeast Washington-Victim Ordered Defendant To Leave Her Apartment Building-

     WASHINGTON - Earl Johnson, 41, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to a prison sentence of 14 years and three months for fatally stabbing a woman at an apartment building in Southeast Washington last year, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced.

     Johnson pled guilty in April 2013 in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia to a charge of voluntary manslaughter while armed in the August 2012 killing of Antionette Mitchell. He was sentenced by the Honorable Russell F. Canan. Upon completion of his prison term, Johnson will be placed on five years of supervised release.

     According to the government’s evidence, in the early morning hours of Aug. 22, 2012, Johnson was inside an upstairs apartment in the 3200 block of 13th Street SE, where Ms. Mitchell, 29, and her relatives, including the defendant’s ex-girlfriend, resided. Johnson did not live in the apartment or in any other apartments in the multi-unit building.

     Once inside the apartment, Johnson began arguing with his ex-girlfriend. Ms. Mitchell eventually got involved and told Johnson to leave, warning that she would call the police if he refused. Johnson finally left the apartment, angrily slamming the door behind him. As he proceeded downstairs to the building’s exit, Ms. Mitchell followed him, carrying a clothes iron.

     Johnson walked a few feet away, then turned and started walking back toward the building. At this point, Ms. Mitchell stood inside the building hallway, near the front door. While wielding the iron, she told Johnson that he could not come back inside. Johnson then approached the doorway, walking toward Ms. Mitchell. As he pulled the door open, Ms. Mitchell attempted to prevent him from entering and swung the iron and struck him in the head.

     Shortly thereafter, Johnson began stabbing Ms. Mitchell multiple times with the knife, continuing even after she was wounded and helpless. Ms. Mitchell died from the wounds. Johnson was arrested later in the day.

     In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen commended the work of those who investigated the case for the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD). He also acknowledged the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialist Sandra Lane and Victim/Witness Advocate Tamara Ince, as well as Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael C. Liebman, who investigated and prosecuted the matter.

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Updated February 19, 2015