Persistent Violent Felony Offender Sentenced for Attempted Criminal Possession of a Weapon

Modified: August 28, 2020 11:05am

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Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 32-year-old Nicholas J. Johnson of Buffalo has been sentenced by Erie County Court Judge Susan Eagan to an indeterminate sentence of 12 years to life in prison. He was sentenced today as a persistent violent felony offender.

On April 9, 2019, at approximately 11:40 p.m., the defendant was the passenger of a vehicle that was illegally parked on Southampton Street. When two Buffalo Police officers approached the vehicle, they observed a gun in the defendant’s waistband. The defendant refused orders from police and a struggled ensued as the defendant was seated in the vehicle and attempted to secure the illegal gun. As the defendant fought with the officers, he told the driver of the vehicle to flee. The driver put the vehicle into drive and the two police officers were dragged approximately 150 feet.

The officers were taken to ECMC to be treated for multiple injuries. Both have since recovered from those injuries.

Johnson pleaded guilty to one count of Attempted Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, a Class “D” felony, on January 30, 2020. 

The driver of the vehicle was acquitted on all charges by Judge Eagan following a bench trial in February 2020.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Ryan D. Haggerty of the DA’s Tactical Prosecution Unit and Chief Justin Wallens of the DA’s Felony Trials Bureau.