Phoenix/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on June 20, 2024
Howard Lamar Johnson III Sentenced to 20 Years for Aggravated Assault of Arizona TrooperSource: Unsplash/Tingey Injury Law Firm

In a clear-cut case of justice served, Howard Lamar Johnson III, born April 1989, has received a 20-year prison sentence after engaging in a violent encounter with a law enforcement officer, per an announcement from Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell. Johnson, a convicted felon, was sentenced for aggravated assault, specifically identified as a Class Two Dangerous Felony, and will be serving out his sentence in the Arizona Department of Corrections, this was confirmed through the Maricopa County Attorney's Office.

The confrontation that led to Johnson's sentence unfolded after a vehicular accident on May 30, 2023, with Johnson attempting to evade the scene which triggered a pursuit by an Arizona Department of Public Safety Trooper, Johnson then fired multiple shots at the trooper as he tried to effect an arrest, the troop incurred severe injuries but survived the confrontation. At the time of his arrest, Johnson was not legally permitted to possess a firearm due to multiple felony convictions, however, he was armed that day which could say, piled onto the gravity of his criminal actions.

Johnson’s sentencing comes after a guilty plea to the aggravated assault charge on May 9, 2024. The policy of the Maricopa County Attorney's Office is quite straightforward when it comes to felons found with deadly weapons—a prison term is non-negotiable, which was applicable in Johnson's predicament.

County Attorney Rachel Mitchell commented on the case, emphasizing the severity of Johnson's actions and highlighting the consequences faced by those who unlawly wield weapons and in doing so, endanger public safety, "This is a dangerous criminal who shouldn't have had a gun on him, yet he did," Mitchell said, “Through this policy we ensure the public that there are severe consequences for those who unlawfully possess a weapon and pose a threat to our community", these remarks, she relayed during the announcement of the sentencing.