A federal jury sentenced a Virginia man who took part in a conspiracy to commit armed home invasions of drug dealers to 19 years in prison.
Thirty-six-year-old Jamaa I. Johnson of Wytheville was found guilty to use firearms in crimes of violence, conspiracies to commit armed robbery and multiple justice charges.
According to court records, Johnson and his co-defendant, Darrell E. Gillespie, along with others traveled to a drug dealer’s home in Pittsburgh. During the robbery, they stole marijuana, which was taken back to Charleston and divided among the men. Johnson, Gillespie and their co-conspirators robbed six more properties in Virginia and West Virginia over the next four months. On January 18, 2012, the group robbed a Charleston property, where a victim sustained stab and gunshot wounds.
Additionally, the jury found Johnson guilty of witness tampering. He tried to get his ex-girlfriend to craft a false alibi through a letter in which he wrote: “I need you to really remember that trip you took to see me” and “please get this prepared.” The remarks were referring to a trip to Richmond that was confirmed to never have occurred, according to prosecutors. The date Johnson was referring to was January 18, 2012, when his ex-girlfriend drove him to Charleston, so he could destroy evidence.
Darrell E. Gillespie, who is awaiting sentencing, faces a mandatory minimum 30-year prison sentence and maximum sentence of life in prison.