Goodall Sentenced to Life in Prison for Kidnapping Case of Wake Forest Man
RALEIGH – The United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina John Stuart Bruce announced that today in federal court, Chief United States District Judge James C. Dever, III, sentenced SHAMIEKA GOODALL, a/k/a Donna Diva, 30, of Covington, Georgia to life imprisonment followed by 5 years of supervised release. On January 23, 2017, a jury found GOODALL guilty of Conspiracy to Kidnap a relative of a North Carolina state prosecutor and of a separate substantive count of Kidnapping relating to the same.
In October of 2012, Kelvin Melton, one of the founding members of the United Blood Nation, was convicted by a Wake County jury on two counts pertaining to a gang-related shooting that occurred in Raleigh in September of 2011. As a result of this conviction, Melton was sentenced to life imprisonment and incarcerated in the maximum security unit at Polk Correctional Institution (“Polk”) in Butner, North Carolina. Melton concocted a plan under which he arranged for various low ranking gang members located in the vicinity of Atlanta, Georgia, to kidnap a person related to the North Carolina state prosecutor. Melton planned to use such hostage to extort dismissal of his life imprisonment sentence.
During the early morning hours of Saturday, April 5, 2014, Melton held a conference call with various gang members located at GOODALL’s home in Covington, Georgia, during which he generally discussed the mission. The kidnapping team (which included a member that had been recruited by GOODALL) assembled at GOODALL’s house and GOODALL provided the team with funds to use during the course of the kidnapping mission. After traveling from Covington, Georgia, to Wake Forest, North Carolina, the kidnapping team arrived at the home of Frank Janssen (the state prosecutor’s father) just prior to noon on April 5, 2014. The kidnapping team used the ruse of delivering lost mail, to get Frank Janssen to open his front door. Mr. Janssen was then pistol whipped, tazed, and taken from his home against his will.
During the course of the trip back to Georgia, GOODALL and others were called upon to determine the location at which Mr. Janssen would be held. The kidnapping team was then instructed to bring Mr. Janssen to an apartment located in Southeast Atlanta. Mr. Janssen was bound to a chair and held in a small closet from the early evening of April 5, 2014, through late on the night of April 9, 2014. Just hours before Mr. Janssen was rescued, Melton called and instructed the kidnapping team (including the team member recruited by GOODALL) to find a location to bury Mr. Janssen and then return to the apartment and kill Mr. Janssen. Through a coordinated effort involving many federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team rescued Mr. Janssen at 11:55 pm on April 9, 2014.
United States Attorney John Stuart Bruce stated, “As I stated when Kelvin Melton was convicted, this crime was monstrously cruel to the victim and his family, including a dedicated public servant who was being targeted for her public service. It was also an attack on our criminal justice system. We must do more to stop convicted prisoners from reaching out from their prison cells to harm witnesses and law enforcement officials, and to continue their criminal enterprises. The convictions in this case are a start.”
“Today is the final chapter in the prosecution of a heinous crime conducted by members of a violent gang. We hope this conviction sends a message that all gang members involved in these crimes will be held accountable. We would like to thank our federal and local law enforcement partners for their incredible cooperation which lead to an innocent man’s rescue and the convictions of those responsible,” said John Strong, the Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in North Carolina.
The case was investigated by the FBI Charlotte, FBI Atlanta, the Wake Forest Police Department, the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation with assistance by the Durham County Sheriff’s Office, Raleigh Police Department, Durham Police Department, North Carolina Alcohol Law Enforcement, Garner Police Department, North Carolina Highway Patrol, RDU Police, City County Bureau of Investigation, the Cobb County Police Department, Alpharetta Police Department, Atlanta Police Department, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina is handling the prosecution of these cases.