• Alvin Bragg's Prison Reform Poster Boy (And Joe Rogan Guest) Charged With Murder

    March 7, 2024
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    Sheldon Johnson on The Joe Rogan Experience (Source: YouTube screencap)

    Poster Boy For Criminal Reform Returns To Form

    Sheldon Johnson, a "criminal justice activist," is being held on murder charges following a gruesome discovery in a Bronx apartment: a dismembered body. The body, it is alleged, is that of a former prison rival.

    Johnson, 48, worked at Queens Defenders (@QueensDefenders), a public legal defense firm.

    Johnson became something of a cause célèbre in the past year. He was released early from prison, having served 25 years of a 50 year sentence. His release was the work of activist D.A. Alvin Bragg, who has sought to decriminalize and forgive scores of prisoners. We continue to see the fruit of his labors.

    After he was spotted by a neighbor of the deceased, Johnson was monitored by building superintendent Orlando Medina on CCTV. Johnson left and returned to the apartment complex several times, once in a blond wig. The police were summoned. According to the NY Times, what they eventually discovered was gruesome.

    Once the detectives obtained a warrant to search the apartment, they discovered the victim’s torso and feet inside the bin, the reports said. They also found his legs, arms and head in the freezer. Mr. Small had been shot at least once in the head.

    Wrote To Alvin Bragg From Prison

    Johnson wrote to D.A. Bragg from prison, using the website PrisonWriters.com, a nonprofit organization that seeks so open channels of dialogue between prisoners and lawmakers. His letter is full of verbal flourishes, woke jargon, and fifty-cent words. The full body of the letter can be found here.

    The beginning of Johnson's letter to D.A. Alvin Bragg. (Source: PrisonWriters.com)

    Apparently, the letter, combined with Johnson's good works in prison (he attained his G.E.D. and took courses in "Aggression Replacement Training"), sufficed to earn Johnson release from prison last May. In less than a year, it appears, this self-described victim of "systemic racism...[and] the school-to-prison pipeline" is headed back to prison.

    Could've Been Obama's Son...Or Smollett's Brother

    Upon seeing Johnson onscreen and listening to him describe his past, a couple of things come to mind. Joe Biden's 2007 description of his primary rival Barack Obama, for one. "I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy," Biden said. "I mean, that's a storybook, man." The infamous line applies loosely to the eloquent and thoughtful Johnson insofar that both were presented to the public as role models.

    From there, one recalls Obama's description of Trayvon Martin: "This could've been my son." Indeed, like Obama, Johnson was involved with community organizing through his recent emplyer, Queens Defenders.

    Then again, given all of Johnson's earnest claims of reformation, being spotted in a blond wig trying to cover up the murder of a former prison mate, perhaps the most apt public figure to recall is Jussie Smollett.

    Jussie Smollett (Source: YouTube screencap)

    In a chilling moment of foresight during the interview, Johnson reflects about his past and his future: "And I said to myself, 'I been doing bad for so long, I'm gonna try to do something good. If all else fails, I could always go back to doing bad.'"

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