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Press Release

Attack on officer in downtown Houston sends local man to prison

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

HOUSTON – A 38-year-old Houston resident has been sentenced for assault of a federal officer after damaging two downtown buildings, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.

Justin Wade Prophet pleaded guilty March 25.

U.S. District Judge David Hittner has now ordered Prophet to serve 150 months in federal prison to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. In handing down the sentence, the court noted Prophet’s childhood and mental health challenges made this sentencing one of the most difficult cases he has had. However, the court emphasized the seriousness of the offense warranted a higher term of imprisonment. The court felt the sentence was appropriate given the need to enforce respect for the law and to protect the public from future crimes.

On Oct. 26, 2023, Prophet was outside the federal courthouse in Houston during the early morning hours when he smashed a window with a long metal pole. He then walked to another building across the street, broke another window with the same pole and gained entry. While inside, he attempted to assault an individual who was on his way to work. He also damaged additional property.

Authorities from the federal courthouse confronted him shortly thereafter, at which time Prophet struck one of them with the pole. The officer shot Prophet in his lower extremities. Law enforcement immediately took Prophet into custody and transported him to the hospital.

Prophet will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

The Department of Homeland Security - Federal Protective Service and Houston Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Barri Dean handled the sentencing.

Updated June 20, 2024

Violent Crime