Honaker Man Convicted of Drug Distribution, 7th Offense

Lebanon, VA — On March 29, 2017, Barney Johnson, an 81 year-old man from Honaker, Virginia, was convicted of Distribution of Schedule II Controlled Substance after a jury trial in the Russell County Circuit Court.  The Jury recommended Johnson be sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Brian Patton presented evidence during the trial that Johnson has six (6) previous convictions for the same offense.  The conviction orders that were entered in to evidence show that Johnson was originally convicted of four (4) counts of Distribution on August 23, 1993, and he was sentenced to 15 years in prison.  After being released on Parole on those charges, the evidence showed he was convicted again for two (2) counts of the same offense on May 19, 2000, and sentenced to Life and 40 years in prison.  Johnson was again released on geriatric parole by the Department of Corrections on August 14, 2006.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Brian Patton stated, “we realize that this ten year prison sentence will likely be a life sentence for Johnson and prevent him from continuing to sale drugs in our community.”  Patton further stated, “it is very disappointing that the Department of Corrections placed an established drug dealer back in our community after being sentenced to such a lengthy term. Mr. Johnson showed he was not going to stop his criminal behavior and he did not stop.”

This case was investigated by the Russell County Sheriff’s office and the Virginia State Police.