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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Wisconsin

Friday, August 16, 2013

Violent Drug Offender Sentenced To 150 Months

MADISON, WIS. -- John W. Vaudreuil, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Marcus Johnson, 26, Madison, Wis., was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Barbara B. Crabb to 150 months in prison, followed by a three-year term of supervised release, for possessing cocaine with intent to distribute it.  Johnson pleaded guilty to this offense on June 21, 2013.

 On May 15, 2012, Johnson and others were involved in a violent, armed home invasion in Madison.  A neighbor called police and provided the license plate of the vehicle associated with the armed intruders. 

Meanwhile, the Fitchburg Police Department, had an outstanding warrant for Johnson’s arrest for his alleged involvement in a pistol whipping at a Fitchburg tavern.  Shortly after the home invasion, Fitchburg officers were looking for Johnson at an apartment complex.  Johnson arrived in his girlfriend’s van.  Darius Howard, Christopher Carthans, and another individual were with Johnson. 

While the officers were arresting Johnson, they recovered 16 baggies of cocaine from his pocket.  As Johnson was being arrested, Carthans fled and threw a pistol in a dumpster.  Carthans was caught nearby and confessed to throwing the firearm in the dumpster.  Officers also located a black 9mm pistol in the van.  It was wrapped in a bloody t-shirt.  Darius Howard admitted wrapping the gun in the t-shirt, and admitted he was going to distribute 14 grams of cocaine found in his pocket.

In choosing a 150-month sentence for Johnson, Judge Crabb repeatedly stated that the community needed to be protected from him.  Johnson began battering people at the age of 12 and he has prior felony convictions for battery by prisoner, and substantial battery - bodily injury.  Further, while pending sentencing in this case, Johnson was charged in Dane County Circuit Case No. 2013CF1361 with battery by prisoner.  Judge Crabb ordered Johnson's 150-month sentence to run consecutively to any sentence he receives in that case, as well as any sentences he receives in other pending cases.

On January 9, 2013, Judge Crabb sentenced Carthans to five years in prison for unlawfully possessing a firearm as a convicted felon, and on January 29, 2013, she sentenced Howard to 15 years in prison for unlawfully possessing cocaine with intent to distribute it, and for unlawful possession of a firearm as a convicted felon.

The charges against Johnson were the result of an investigation conducted by the Fitchburg Police Department, Madison Police Department, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  The prosecution of the case has been handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Rita M. Rumbelow.   

Updated July 14, 2015