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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: Joseph Johnson

Three men facing charges for drug sales near Grant Elementary

The three Spokane men implicated in a drug-selling operation based out of a repair shop near Grant Elementary School remain mired in legal proceedings, as the building — sold in May — falls into disrepair.

Gerry Elerding, 41, was in Spokane County Superior Court on Wednesday after failing to meet with his attorney as scheduled ahead of a court date later this month. Elerding faces a charge of conspiracy to deliver a controlled substance after undercover informants reportedly bought hydrocodone pills from him in March at Lonnie's Auto Repair, 826 S. Perry Ave. Elerding initially pleaded guilty to the charge, earning a year in prison, but he asked for that pleading to be thrown out in July. The state asked Elerding be held without bail Wednesday.

The previous owner of the property, Lonnie Sandros, 59, was arrested in a police bust that occurred May 15. He pleaded not guilty to a charge of unlawful use of a building for drug purposes and is set to appear at trial in September. Sandros sold the garage, which was closed for code violations early in May, to R & G South Perry, LLC, shortly after his arrest, according to tax documents filed with the Spokane County Assessor's Office.

Police arrested Joseph Johnson, 52, in the raid and found a white pill on him later identified as hydrocodone, according to court documents. Detectives say Johnson sold crystal meth to an undercover informant at the body shop in March. Johnson pleaded not guilty to possession of the hydrocodone and delivery of the methamphetamine. His trial is set for October.

Elerding, Sandros and Johnson have lengthy criminal histories, according to court records. Elerding was accused of attacking a police K9 unit in August 2011.

The Lonnie's sign still hangs above the building at 826 S. Perry, though it is unoccupied and the walls show signs of wear.

Carjacking suspects tracked by ‘copter

Two men suspected of carjacking a 2001 Volkswagen Bug were arrested late Saturday after being pursued by a sheriff's helicopter.

Less than 24 hours after helping nab a suspect in a police chase, Air-1 helped arrest Joseph Andrew Johnson, 20, and Lee Jackson Crider, 30, Saturday night on accusations they'd stolen a car in the 9310 block of East 1st Ave. on April 28.
 
Later, a man told police he confronted three men who were driving a Bug on April 29 and that all men had a “tweaker” look to them, court documents say.
 
One man man pointed a gun at him and tried to steal his car, but the man escaped to a gas station and called 911. Police responded to a report of a robbery late Saturday near 1st and Willow, then to a smilar report later in the area of Cataldo Avenue  and Bowman Road.  Police contacted Johnson, who said he'd paid $100 for the car but admitted to being involved in a fight at 2st and Willow. 
 
Johnson said a gun was involved but said he didn't carry it. Johnson was arrested on suspicion of robbery and possession of a stolen motor vehicle, as well as a bag of meth found in  the battery compartment of Johnson's cell phone, according to a probable cause affidavit.
 
Witnesses identified Johnson and Crider as walking away from the Bog. The sheriff's helicopter spotted them in a grassy area near Park on the south side of Interstate 90.  
 
Inside the Bug, police found a machete, which one victim said was used to threaten him.

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