BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — United States Attorney Will Thompson announced on November 17, 2022, two more people have been revealed as part of the Beckley-Philadelphia gun-trafficking ring.
Denise Johnson, 25, of Beckley, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to travel interstate with the intent to engage in dealing firearms without a license while Terri Lawhorn, 28, of Fayetteville, was sentenced to two years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, for making false statements in the acquisition of firearms. Each admitted to a role in a conspiracy to traffic over 140 firearms from the Beckley area to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
According to court documents, between early 2020 and mid-2021, Johnson recruited various people in the Beckley area to help buy firearms for co-defendants Bisheem Jones, also known as “Bosh,” Derrick Woodard, also known as “D,” Shyheem Woodard-Smith, also known as “Peanut” and “Nut,” and Hassan Abdullah, also known as “San.” Johnson is scheduled to be sentenced on March 3, 2023, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine.
Lawhorn was among the straw purchasers. Lawhorn admitted to buying a Glock 44 .22-caliber pistol; a Glock 43 9mm pistol; and a Glock 42 .380-caliber pistol for Jones from a gun dealer in Mount Hope on December 23, 2020. Lawhorn further admitted to buying at least three additional firearms as part of the trafficking conspiracy.
No mugshot was available for Denise Johnson.
Of the over 140 trafficked firearms, approximately 45 have been recovered at crime scenes primarily in Philadelphia and have been connected to two homicides, crimes of domestic violence, and other violent offenses.