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Press Release

Convicted Murderer Gets 23 Years in Prison For Memorial Day Killing in 2022 Near Dupont Circle

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
DNA CODIS Hit Helped Solve the Case

            WASHINGTON – James Jackson, 30, of Silver Spring, Maryland, was sentenced today in Superior Court to 23 years in prison for the fatal shooting of Christian Monje, 29, of Fairfax, Virginia, in D.C.’s Dupont Circle neighborhood, announced U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves and Chief Pamela Smith, of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD). Jackson pleaded guilty, in February 2024, to one count of second-degree murder while armed.

            According to the government’s evidence, on May 30, 2022, at approximately 4:30 a.m., officers of the Metropolitan Police Department’s Second District responded to the 1700 block of Rhode Island Ave NW in response to the sounds of gunshots. Officers located Mr. Monje on the steps of St. Matthew’s Cathedral suffering a gunshot wound to the head. He was transported to the hospital and died from his injuries a few weeks later.

            Detectives recovered surveillance footage from nearby cameras which showed an individual approaching Mr. Monje while he sat on the steps of the church. Cameras also captured the individual fleeing down a nearby alley and ducking behind a dumpster. Detectives searched the area around the dumpster and located a 9mm Polymer80 “ghost gun” that was later determined to be the murder weapon.

            The case remained unsolved, without a suspect, for months until detectives received a CODIS hit from a DNA profile obtained from the 9mm Polymer 80’s magazine. The Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) is a national DNA database run by the Federal Bureau of Investigation that contains DNA profiles from various sources. The CODIS hit in this case was a match with a profile that was submitted by the Maryland State Police Forensic Sciences Division in reference to a prior arrest of the defendant. Using that investigative lead, detectives were able to confirm the defendant’s identity as the murderer using DNA and cell site evidence.

            In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Graves and Chief Smith commended the work of those who investigated the case from the Metropolitan Police Department. They acknowledged the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialist Mabry Johnson and Supervisory Victim/Witness Advocate Jennifer Clark.

            Finally, they commended the work of Assistant U.S. Attorney Miles Janssen, who investigated and prosecuted the case.


Updated May 24, 2024

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 24-458