The Wise County Circuit Court heard evidence on Friday, October 5, 2018 from prosecutors and the defense in the case against Jermaine Christopher Johnson, age 33 of Wise, who was convicted in July with Malicious Wounding of a Wise County senior citizen, Attempted Second Degree Murder, Stabbing in the Commission of a Felony, and Trespassing. After hearing evidence from both sides, the Court imposed a sentence of 19 years in prison with 12 years suspended. He will serve an active sentence of seven years in the custody of the Department of Corrections and will be required to serve seven years probation following his release.
On October 24, 2016, Johnson entered lands belonging to an elderly resident of Wise and attempted to gain access to the residence through the front porch door. Hearing someone at the door, the property owner attempted to exit his residence through a rear entrance. It was at this point that the victim saw Johnson and asked him what he was doing. Upon being confronted, Johnson attacked the elderly victim with a handheld garden tool. The victim was then slammed onto the ground by Johnson and stabbed multiple times between the eyes, on top of his head, and on the back of the head. The victim suffered serious injuries. Thankfully, a citizen bystander witnessed the attack and rushed to assist the victim.
The case was prosecuted by Commonwealth's Attorney Chuck Slemp and senior assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Josh Newberry.
Commonwealth's Attorney Chuck Slemp said, "The vicious attack of a senior citizen at his house is appalling. Evidence presented showed that the victim loved gardening and spending time working outside at his home. Not only did Johnson violate that sacred space by trying to break into the victim's residence and trespassing on his property, but also when caught in the act he used a garden tool to savagely wound this senior citizen. Our entire community should be outraged by this conduct and, accordingly, we asked the court to sentence Johnson to the maximum penitentiary sentence available under the law."
Slemp also praised the citizen bystander who after witnessing the attack rushed in to assist the victim and the hard work of the entire Wise County Sheriff's Department in assisting with the prosecution of this case.