Michael Johnson knew he was HIV positive when he exposed 31 people to the HIV virus. And there could be more victims. The former student attended Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri. The 21-year-old filmed the encounters with his partners. He never told any of them that he had HIV. He also never told them that they were being filmed.
Johnson was first arrested in October of 2013. The charge was for knowing he had the virus and spreading it to another person. A sexual partner of his had notified the police. The following month, four other victims came forward. This prompted the police to file more felony charges against him.
In January 2014, a team of investigators found numerous instances of the videotaped sexual activity on Michael Johnson’s laptop computer. There were 32 separate tapes and 31 partners over a period of four months.
Johnson was known as “Tiger Mandingo.” His shirtless profile could be found on many websites. This was one of the ways he met his sexual partners; he also found partners through a school he had previously attended.
The victims that have come forward have been tested for HIV, with some of the results coming back negative. Many others who were exposed to the HIV virus by Johnson are still waiting to find out their results. The prosecutor’s office is asking anyone who has been sexually active with Johnson to come forward.
It is known that most of the victims are male. The investigators are working to identify the people in the videos. It is for their own safety that they be tested as well as a public safety issue. Anyone who has had sexual encounters with these individuals should be tested as well.
The criminal offense in this case is knowingly exposing all of Johnson’s sexual partners to HIV. Some of the victims are shown on tape asking him if he was disease free. He lied and proceeded to have sex without condoms with each individual.
HIV is a virus that can cause AIDS. Identified in the 1980s, reports from the government and health teams back then had suggested abstinence or use of a condom for protection during sexual intercourse. It was a new disease, and precautions were announced.
In the 1990s, there was an increase in condom education, which coincided with the rise in HIV and AIDS testing and education. Various types of condoms were made available to entice the public to use them. More and more people became aware of HIV and AIDS.
Now, in the 2000s, HIV and AIDS awareness has risen, but there is still a segment of the population that is not educated. Education and informational guidelines are available, which most colleges and universities have. A spokesman for Lindenwood University, Scott Queen, has said that they are doing all they can to educate and protect their students. He added that they are also working in full cooperation with authorities. The students have been alerted and advised of the situation.
Johnson is being held in county jail with a bail of $100,000. He is facing a potential sentence of life in prison. Detectives are currently searching for all others exposed to HIV. If anyone has any knowledge of more victims, they are asked by the investigators to please step forward. They are asking this in order for justice to prevail and in the interest of protecting the general public. The Saint Charles Missouri Detectives can be reached at: (636) 949-3320.
by Saki Kahala