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Press Release

Charleston felon pleads guilty to assault and gun crime

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

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A Charleston man pleaded guilty today to a federal gun charge and assaulting a federal officer, announced United States Attorney Carol Casto. Taurean Amadeus Johnson, 30, entered his guilty plea to being a felon in possession of a firearm and assaulting a federal officer after a court appearance.

Johnson admitted that on January 16, 2017, law enforcement executed a search warrant at Johnson’s residence and on a vehicle parked in front of the residence. Officers found a Lorcin L380 semiautomatic pistol in the vehicle. Johnson admitted that the gun belonged to him. Johnson also admitted in a statement to law enforcement that he acquired at least two other handguns, which were also recovered. Johnson was prohibited from possessing any firearm under federal law because of 2009 convictions in Cabell County Circuit Court for first degree robbery, transporting a controlled substance into the state, and delivery of crack.

Johnson further admitted to assaulting a federal officer. On January 17, 2017, Johnson appeared before the United States Magistrate Judge in Charleston for an initial appearance. When the hearing ended, Johnson became combative leaving the courtroom. Johnson admitted that while being placed in a holding cell, he began choking a deputy of the United States Marshals Service by pulling on his neck tie. The Marshals Service regained control of Johnson through physical restraint.

Johnson faces up to 18 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on July 13, 2017.

The Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the United States Marshals Service conducted the investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Timothy D. Boggess is in charge of the prosecution. The plea hearing was held before United States District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods. Project Safe Neighborhoods is a nationwide commitment to reduce gun crime in the United States by networking existing local programs targeting gun crime.

Updated April 20, 2017

Project Safe Neighborhoods