News and Press Releases

springfield woman pleads guilty to assaulting
federal agent with her car

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 13, 2014

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Springfield, Mo., woman pleaded guilty in federal court today to assaulting a federal agent with her car while he was attempting to apprehend her boyfriend during a foot chase.

Alisha Johnson, 32, of Springfield, pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge David P. Rush to the charge contained in a Dec. 17, 2013, federal indictment. Johnson remains in federal custody.

On July 25, 2013, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) agents were attempting to apprehend Francisco Sosa-Lopez for immigration violations. When Sosa-Lopez saw the approaching agents, he fled the area on foot.  While the agents were pursuing Sosa-Lopez, Alisha Johnson arrived in her vehicle and attempted to pick up Sosa-Lopez.

As Sosa-Lopez attempted to get in the vehicle, Johnson shouted derogatory comments at the pursuing agents, indicating that she was aware of the agents’ intent to apprehend Sosa-Lopez. Agents continued the pursuit and ordered Sosa-Lopez to not enter the vehicle. Sosa-Lopez ignored the agents’ directives and continued to try to enter the rolling vehicle. As one of the agents approached Sosa-Lopez, Johnson drove her vehicle over the curb and into the agent, striking the agent on the left leg. Sosa-Lopez entered the vehicle and fled from the scene; he remains a fugitive from justice. Johnson voluntarily surrendered to law enforcement shortly after the incident.

As result of being struck by the vehicle, the federal agent suffered significant damage to his knee. Two surgeries were later performed on his knee.

Under federal statutes, Johnson is subject to a sentence of up to 20 years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) and the Greene County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department.

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