All Alaska Cities

Cracking Down on Crack Dealers

What would you prefer to hear at the end of the year – good news or bad news?

Unfortunately, no matter what we prefer, both of them are out there and they are often intertwined. Take this story that came out of Anchorage in December 2011, for instance. On the one hand, it’s bad news whenever we hear that the drug trade is alive and well and sickening our state and our nation. We hate to hear that young people and even older people are consuming mind-altering drugs and painkillers as a way of getting away from their problems and looking for some kind of temporary happiness.

On the other hand, a story like this brings us hope because we can see that drug dealers are being caught nearly every day. We can hope that the laws and punishments will deter people from continuing and that our legislators will move ever closer to providing more drug courts and other programs that will help those who are addicted to overcome the difficulty.

In this case, a man and woman from Anchorage were sentenced in federal court for their drug-trafficking crimes. Sarah and Willie Johnson worked together on their illegal business. Sarah was sentenced to 45 months in prison for possession of controlled substances with intent to distribute, and Willie was sentenced to 60 months for his conviction of conspiracy in relation to controlled-substance trafficking.

This couple had young children, but did not see a problem with keeping a “substantial” amount of crack cocaine and powder cocaine in their home. Specifically, they found 74.7 grams of crack cocaine and 52.9 grams of powder cocaine. They also kept scales for weighing the products and the police found $2500 in cash.

This was not the first time to court for either of them, as they had prior convictions here in Alaska. Willie Johnson was also previously convicted of armed robbery, for which he received a sentence of 77 months in prison back in 1991.

The good news is: two more off of the streets. The bad news is: there are more to be caught.


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