Felon faces firearms charges

Detectives from the Lassen County Sheriff’s Office received information Brian Keith Johnson Jr., 41, of Sacramento, California was living in Herlong and in possession of illegal firearms.  Johnson is a convicted felon and is prohibited from possessing any firearms or ammunition.

On Thursday May 18, detectives obtained a search warrant for the residence where Johnson was living.  Due to the high-risk nature of the warrant, the Lassen County Sheriff’s Special Weapons and Tactics team executed the warrant.  The SWAT team utilized their armored rescue vehicle and called on the assistance of the Sheriff’s Office drone team.  The team was able to safely call Johnson out of the residence and detain him without incident.

Inside Johnson’s bedroom, detectives located a .223 caliber short-barreled AR-style rifle beside Johnson’s bed.  The AR was loaded with a round in the chamber and had a 40-round magazine attached with 35 armor-piercing rounds inside. An additional 40-round magazine was located, loaded with 30 rounds of armor-piercing bullets.  The AR did not have a serial number and was determined to be a ghost gun.

A sawed off .410 shotgun was located inside Johnson’s closet.  Multiple boxes of ammunition were also located inside Johnson’s closet, including .357 SIG ammunition.  During the investigation, detectives recovered a .357 SIG handgun at another location, which is believed to be Johnson’s.  The handgun was also determined to be a ghost gun.

On Nov. 28, 2022, the Lassen County Sheriff’s Office received a Gun Violence Reduction Program grant from the California Department of Justice.  The grant funded a detective, who is dedicated to investigating and seizing guns and ammunition from persons who are prohibited from possessing them.  This case was a direct result from our GVRP Detective.

Johnson was arrested and booked into the Lassen County Jail on the following charges: 29800(a)(1) PC (3-counts) – Felon in possession of a firearm; 30305(a) PC (1-count) – Felon in possession of ammunition; 30605 PC (1-count) – Possession of an illegal assault weapon; 33215 PC (2-counts) – Possession of a short-barreled rifle; 29180 PC (2-counts) – Possession of a ghost gun.

Bail was set at $30,000, and the case was referred to the Lassen County District Attorney’s Office.