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Press Release

District Man Sentenced to 18 Months in Prison For Attacking Deputy U.S. Marshal in Superior Court Cellblock

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia

            WASHINGTON - Vincent Wilson, 24, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to 18 months in prison for assaulting a Deputy United States Marshal during an incident at a courthouse earlier this year, announced U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips and Michael Hughes, U.S. Marshal for the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

            Wilson pled guilty in August 2016, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to a charge of assaulting, resisting or impeding a federal law enforcement officer. He was sentenced by the Honorable Rudolph Contreras. Upon completion of his prison term, Wilson will be placed on three years of supervised release.

            According to the government’s evidence, the chain of events took place on Jan. 5, 2016, while Wilson was at the Superior Court of the District of Columbia in an unrelated case. The incident began as a deputy marshal was escorting Wilson to a single cell in the main cell block at the courthouse. At this time, Wilson began yelling loudly at the deputy marshal and attempted to move toward him. The deputy marshal maintained control of Wilson with a hand on Wilson’s arm and a hand on Wilson’s head to prevent any potential spitting or other assaultive behavior until Wilson was in the cell.  While inside the holding cell, Wilson turned and faced the deputy marshal, and from approximately five feet away, spit an amount of spit in his direction. A portion of Wilson’s saliva struck the deputy marshal under the left eye.

            Thereafter, the deputy marshal entered the holding cell to control Wilson’s head in order to place a spit mask on Wilson to prevent any further spitting on other security officials.  While the deputy marshal was trying to maintain control of Wilson’s head, Wilson continuously tried to rotate his body and head toward him. Aided by other officers, the deputy marshal moved Wilson to the floor of the cell.  While still in handcuffs, Wilson reached up toward him and dug his fingernails into the deputy marshal’s left and right forearm, causing great pain and several large lacerations. Wilson then began to claw down on the forearms with his fingernails and dug further into the skin.  The deputy marshal let up his control of Wilson’s head due to the pain.  At that moment, Wilson was able to turn his head toward the deputy marshal and once again spit saliva, making contact with the deputy marshals’ skin, eyes, and mouth.

            In announcing today’s sentence, U.S. Attorney Phillips and Marshal Hughes commended the actions of all the Deputy United States Marshals who protect the court system and judicial process.  They also expressed appreciation for the work of those who handled the case at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialists Jeannette Litz and Teesha Tobias, Legal Assistant Peter Gaboton, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Emory V. Cole, who investigated and prosecuted the case.

Updated November 4, 2016

Press Release Number: 16-213