McDowell County inmate pleads guilty to weapon charge

BLUEFIELD, WV (WOAY) – United States Attorney Mike Stuart announced today that a federal inmate pled guilty in federal court in Bluefield to possessing a weapon.

Desmond Johnson, 29, an inmate at the Federal Correctional Institution McDowell, admitted that on July 21, 2019, he possessed a handcrafted weapon known as a shank. A staff member at the prison saw Johnson drop the shank, and another staff member recovered it.

Johnson faces up to five years in prison, to be served consecutively to the sentence he is now serving. Sentencing is set for Sept. 14, 2020.

“You would think that already being in a federal prison might help a person to change their ways. This doesn’t appear to have been the case with Mr. Johnson,” United States Attorney Mike Stuart said.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Assistant United States Attorney John File is handling the prosecution. Senior United States District Judge David A. Faber presided over the plea hearing.

Sponsored Content
Tyler Barker is currently the News Director and Digital Content Manager for WOAY-TV. He was promoted to this job in Mid-November. He still will fill in on weather from time to time. You can follow Tyler on Facebook and Twitter @wxtylerb. Have any news tips or weather questions? Email him at