Help Fund The Sanjay Johnson Legal Defense Fund
$3,375 raised
68% of $5k goal
71 contributors
11 Days left Ends Oct 1, 2018
In the last ten years, HIV-specific criminal statutes have been used in over 300 prosecutions in the United States, resulting in prison sentences of up to thirty years. Currently, cases are on the rise in Arkansas and we must answer a call to action now!!

My name is Sanjay Johnson and I currently live in Little Rock, Arkansas. I am a 25-year-old Black Gay man that works two jobs, seeks to use my creative outlets in the arts, and contribute to my community as I can. Unfortunately, in August 2017, my life was interrupted by the biggest challenge and ongoing nightmare that I couldn't have imagined nor would wish upon anyone else. 

As a single young man, I chose to explore the world of meeting other like-minded individuals in an online format which resulted in myself meeting an individual for a consensual encounter. After months of no contact with this person, I was confronted at my front door by police with a complaint citing myself as "knowing and willfully exposing another to HIV." I was immediately arrested and spent over a week in jail hoping that someone cared enough and would come to my rescue. 

I was extremely lucky to have a local advocate, Mr. Cornelius Mabin who came to my aid and has remained supportive including assisting with creating this platform, as well as, educating me on the issue of HIV Criminalization and its impact on those living with HIV from his online resource at www.arkansasrapps.com.

From August 2017 until now, my case has moved through the courts with various motions that have been heard and denied. Added to this I had my personal doctor and other expert testimony that cited that there were no known cases of someone transmitting the virus and there was no other testimony otherwise, yet the judge ruled that it was theoretically possible to transmit the virus, which could cause me to be sentenced up to 30 years in prison. I am grateful to my Attorney, who has been diligent in pursuing many legal angles ranging from the aforementioned motions to possible future appeals.

Ultimately I must now prepare for a jury trial date, rescheduled for October 4, 2018, with me facing a jury who will decide my fate based on their understanding or lack of knowledge about HIV or how far we've advanced in this health dilemma. 

Consequently, I needed to reassess my immediate need and purpose of this page. Therefore, I have re-set my funding appeal to a goal of $5,000 by August 1, 2018, and will further update this platform with additional details, proceedings, and outcomes on this case.

I truly thank all those who have already donated and appreciate those sharing my story with your networks, allies, family, and friends from coast to coast. 

 

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