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Press Release

Maryland Man Sentenced to 21 Years in Prison For Killing Woman in Car in Northwest Washington

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Victim's Children Were in the Back Seat

            WASHINGTON – Joseph Fox, 28, of Capitol Heights, Maryland, was sentenced today to 21 years in prison for killing a woman as she sat in her car earlier this year in Northwest Washington. Her two young children were in the back seat at the time of the slaying.

            The announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves and Robert J. Contee III, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).

            Fox pleaded guilty in March 2022, in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, to one count of second-degree murder while armed and two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon. The plea, which was contingent upon the Court’s approval, called for a sentence of 14 to 21 years in prison. The Honorable Milton C. Lee, Jr. accepted the plea and sentenced Fox accordingly. Following his prison term, Fox will be placed on five years of supervised release.

            The shooting took place shortly after 8 p.m. on Jan. 19, 2022. According to the government’s evidence, Fox and the victim, Sierra Johnson, 27, were in a car parked near the intersection of Georgia Avenue and Euclid Street NW. Ms. Johnson was in the driver’s seat and Fox was in the passenger seat, with Ms. Johnson’s children in the back seat of the car. While inside the car, Fox shot Ms. Johnson at least four times. He then got out of the vehicle and shot her at least one more time before fleeing with the gun. Ms. Johnson was pronounced dead a short time later. She had four gunshot wounds to the head, one to the right side of her neck, and one to her right upper extremities. The children were not hit by the gunfire.

            Fox was arrested on Jan. 25, 2022. He has been in custody ever since.

            In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Graves and Chief Contee commended the work of those who investigated the case from the Metropolitan Police Department. They also expressed appreciation for the work of those who handled the case at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Victim/Witness Advocate Jennifer Allen and Assistant U.S. Attorney Sitara Witanachchi, who investigated and prosecuted the matter.

Updated June 21, 2022

Violent Crime
Firearms Offenses
Press Release Number: 22-187