"Grandmaster Jay" Gets Sentenced To Prison For Actions At 2020 Breonna Taylor Protests

An undated photo of John Fitzgerald Johnson leaving a courtroom in Louisville, Kentucky.
An undated photo of John Fitzgerald Johnson leaving a courtroom in Louisville, Kentucky.

“Grandmaster Jay,” whose name is John Fitzgerald Johnson, was sentenced Wednesday to seven years and two months in prison. Johnson, 59, was found guilty of brandishing a firearm at state and federal officers as well as assault. In February 2021, he was first indicted by a federal grand jury. In May of this year, he was found guilty.

Johnson, who is a leader of a Black militia, led the group through a march in the September 2020 Breonna Taylor protests in Louisville twice. According to a statement from the U.S. Department of Justice, he also received 3 years of supervised release, with no option of parole, in addition to the prison sentence.

Read more

Following the Louisville protests, Johnson was said to have pointed his AR-15 rifle toward a roof where a Secret Service agent, an FBI agent, and three local officers had been stationed. An excerpt from the Department of Justice statement explains:

“According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Johnson, on the evening of September 4, 2020, forcibly assaulted, resisted, opposed, impeded, intimidated, and interfered with a federally deputized task force officer who was performing official duties, when Johnson aimed a rifle at him. Johnson brandished an AR-15 platform rifle and tactical flashlight at two federally deputized Task Force Officers. Both are detectives with the Louisville Metro Police Department. Johnson was also sentenced to 3 years of supervised release upon completion of his term of imprisonment. There is no parole in the federal system.”

Ultimately, Johnson was later found guilty of one count of brandishing a firearm in relation to a crime of violence and one count of assaulting a federal officer. Johnson’s lawyer, Murdoch Walker II, commented to the The Courier Journal that the sentencing was a “bittersweet day” and that it was “inevitable.” He also shared that they plan to appeal.

More from The Root

Sign up for The Root's Newsletter. For the latest news, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Click here to read the full article.