2 Columbus men face life after convictions for shooting at FBI agents, other crimes

Published: Sep. 18, 2023 at 10:52 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 19, 2023 at 10:34 AM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Two men both face life in prison after convictions in a 2022 shootout involving an FBI agent. They are charged with assaulting a federal officer with additional armed drug trafficking charges.

According to court evidence, 25-year-old Joshuia Johnathan Luke Brown, known as “Black,” and co-defendant, 28-year-old Jarvis Smith, were being watched by federal agents in July 2022 as a part of a more significant, ongoing investigation into a Columbus armed drug trafficking community.

Agents say on July 28, 2022, they witnessed the men conduct a drug deal on Winston Road in Columbus. After the defendant left the scene, the agents traveled behind them, conducting mobile surveillance. After traveling on Wade Street and turning on Sheridan Avenue, Smith, the driver, stopped the vehicle in the middle of the road. He and Brown, who was riding passenger, exited and opened fire at the FBI agent’s car.

No one was injured during the shooting, but the FBI vehicle was struck numerous times, along with a bullet going through a private residence’s window.

Smith and Brown escaped law enforcement after a long car and foot chase. However, officials ended up apprehending Smith later that same day. While Brown eventually turned himself in on Aug. 10, after a several-day manhunt.

During the chase, FBI agents and the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office discovered a bag dropped by Brown that contained multiple firearms, matching the bullets shot at officials, and baggies of various illegal drugs.

Subsequently, Brown was found guilty of the following crimes,

  • Forcible assault on a federal officer with a deadly weapon
  • Brandishing a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence
  • Conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute controlled substances
  • Distribution of methamphetamine
  • Possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine
  • Three counts of possession with intent to distribute controlled substances
  • Possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime

As for his co-defendant, Smith, he pleaded guilty to the following,

  • Forcible assault on a federal law enforcement officer
  • Possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime
  • Possession of a firearm by a prohibited person

Brown and Smith face life without the possibility of parole. Their sentencings are scheduled for Jan. 24, 2024, and Dec. 19, respectively.

This case was investigated by the FBI and the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office, with assistance from multiple agencies including the DEA, the Columbus Police Department, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, the Phenix City Police Department and the Russell County, Alabama, Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Christopher Williams and Crawford Seals are prosecuting the case for the Government.