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Indy man sentenced to 8 years after selling guns, drugs on Instagram while on home detention

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Posted at 2:07 PM, May 19, 2023

INDIANAPOLIS — A 21-year-old Indianapolis man was sentenced to eight years in federal prison this week after pleading guilty to possession with intent to distribute fentanyl and illegally possessing a firearm.

William Johnson was on home detention when he was found to be selling guns and drugs on Instagram.

According to court documents, in September 2022 the Indiana Crime Guns Task Force (ICGTF) learned that Johnson was selling firearms and drugs out of his Indianapolis home after observing a photo of Johnson holding multiple firearms posted to Instagram.

At the time the photo was posted, Johnson was on home detention in Marion County.

Johnson's Instagram was not private and investigators viewed his stories that showed him attempting to sell multiple firearms.

Johnson is prohibited from possessing a firearm due to his previous felony convictions. Johnson has four prior felony convictions, each involving the unlawful possession of firearms.

“The days of drug deals solely occurring on street corners are long gone. Today, fentanyl traffickers like this defendant can use social media to push illegal guns and poison into our community,” said U.S. Attorney Zachary A. Myers. “Fentanyl is the leading cause of death for Hoosiers aged 18-45, and gun violence is the leading killer of American children and teens. The federal prison sentence imposed today should send a stark warning to anyone who believes that social media is a safe space to commit crimes: we are watching, we will find you, and we will hold you accountable.”