Jalita Johnson, 26, of Georgia has been sentenced to one year probation, 40 hours of community service, and 180 days of home confinement after pleading guilty to lying about buying a gun for her boyfriend, a convicted felon.
Her boyfriend, Marcus Wheeler, subsequently used the gun to shoot and kill Omaha police officer Kerrie Orozco after she and others attempted to serve a warrant on Wheeler in May.
Johnson pleaded guilty to purchasing a Glock semi-automatic pistol, high capacity drum magazine, and ammunition for Wheeler even though her boyfriend was prohibited from purchasing the items due to his past felony convictions.
Upon purchasing the items, Johnson was required to state on a federal ATF form who the gun was being purchased for or whom she intended to transfer the weapon to. Although Johnson knew she was going to give the weapon to Wheeler, she nonetheless indicated that she was the true buyer.
Knowingly purchasing a gun for someone, who themselves are prohibited from buying a gun, is known as a straw purchase.
The relatively light sentence raises the question as to whether the laws intended to dissuade straw purchasing of guns can actually serve as a deterrent if violators can avoid jail time even after admitting guilt.
Johnson could have received a sentence of up to ten years in prison.
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