VIRGINIA BEACH (AP) — A now former police officer has been sentenced to five years in prison for sexually assaulting a 10-year-old girl who was having a sleepover with his children.
Mark David Johnson, 49, was sentenced Monday per a peal deal that Circuit Judge James Lewis said didn’t allow enough punishment for the crime committed, The Virginian-Pilot reports. The former Virginia Beach police officer pleaded guilty in August to the aggravated sexual assault of a child. He faced up to 20 years in prison. The plea deal limited that to 5.
The judge only moved forward with the sentencing limit after the girl’s family assured the judge they approved of the deal and were was anxious to put the case behind them and avoid having the girl testify at a trial.
The girl was attacked sometime between the summers of 2015 and 2016, when Johnson was still working at the Virginia Beach Police Department. In 2017, Johnson retired from the department he’d served for 20 years and moved to Minnesota. During his tenure at the police department, he received multiple awards for pulling a man from a burning vehicle. He also once told the newspaper that he worked as a resource officer at a middle school. He was arrested in Virginia and charged in the case this year. It’s unclear what prompted his arrest.
Johnson’s lawyer, Floyd Oliver, told the court that his client previously served in the Marines, where he received several awards. He told the judge that Johnson suffered abuse as a child and still suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and sleep disorders. He asked the judge to consider Johnson’s “exemplary record as a public servant” and sentence him to a shorter term, according to the newspaper.