Man sentenced to 15 years in prison for his role in fatal North Side home invasion

December 22, 2018
Emmanuel Johnson, right, appears in court Friday with his lawyer, state Assistant Public Defender Peter Middleton.

One of the five men charged for their roles in a home invasion last year in which a man was shot to death was sentenced Friday to 15 years in prison.

Emmanuel J. Johnson, 32, of Madison, became emotional as he talked about his involvement in the May 30, 2017, armed robbery at the home of Michael Meaderds and his fiancee, Jessica Marias, when Meaderds was shot by another man who was with Johnson as they tried to rob Meaderds of cash and marijuana.

“I have had countless days, nights, crying, praying, thinking about the victims and how my actions impacted their lives, every victim on these cases,” Johnson said. “And to read and hear about how his mom and his children, how they hurt — it hurts. It breaks my heart.”

Johnson was referring to statements made earlier in court by Meaderds’ mother, Raychelle Scott, and by Marias, who told Dane County Circuit Judge Jill Karofsky, in visceral terms, how Meaderds’ death continues to affect them.

“He was my baby, he was my best friend in the world, and they took that away from me,” Scott said. “It’s a life sentence. Every day is a life sentence for me.”

Marias talked about how her 3-year-old son still longs for his father, and in visits to the cemetery still wonders why he isn’t coming home with them. Her son was also in the apartment when the group of men burst in and shot Meaderds.

“You took his best friend,” she said. “And for my son that was everything.”

Johnson was with a group that included Odum Carter, 32, of Sun Prairie, who has pleaded guilty to felony murder and armed robbery, and was said to have shot Meaderds; Steven T. Johnson, 27, of Madison, who was sentenced in October to 15 years in prison; Glenn B. Shead, 32, of Sun Prairie, who knew Meaderds and was being let into Meaderds’ apartment when the others burst in behind him; and Devon Davis, 27, who stood watch outside the apartment.

Davis and Carter await sentencing, while Shead was just charged in August.

Carter, along with Emmanuel Johnson and Steven Johnson, who are not related, also took part in two home invasion armed robberies in Sun Prairie on May 13, 2017, and May 23, 2017. Carter shot and wounded a man during the May 13 robbery.

Assistant District Attorney Tracy McMiller said Carter was a neighbor to Emmanuel Johnson, and asked him if he wanted to commit some robberies. She said Johnson suggested the victims in Sun Prairie because they were drug dealers who would not call the police.

“People in our community deserve to live in a community where they are safe inside their own home,” Karofsky said, “where they won’t be beaten, robbed and shot in front of their children. A place where they are not threatened with guns and knives inside their homes.”

Karofsky commended Johnson for taking responsibility for what he did and for staying crime-free for a long stretch of time going back more than 10 years before the home invasion spree. But at the same time, she said, people who commit crimes like these need to be removed from society for a time so that others can be safe.

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