December 27, 2009 in Idaho, Region

2 shot in downtown CdA; suspect is noted businessman

By The Spokesman-Review
 
Kootenai County Sheriff's Department photo

Adam M. Johnson, 25, was arrested early Sunday, accused of a shooting in downtown Coeur d’Alene that left one person in critical condition.
(Full-size photo)

Two Moses Lake men visiting family for Christmas were shot in downtown Coeur d’Alene early Sunday, one critically.

Bystanders overpowered the suspected gunman, 25-year-old Adam M. Johnson, and were holding him down when police arrived in the 200 block of Sherman Avenue after a 911 call about 12:44 a.m.

In critical condition Sunday at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle was Brandon R. Burgess, 25, who suffered a gunshot wound to his stomach, authorities said. The second victim, Bradley J. Phillips, 25, was shot in the leg and is expected to survive.

Johnson, who’s being held without bail at the Kootenai County Jail, is president and CEO of Convertec, a Coeur d’Alene-based independent telecommunications company. He’s also on the board of directors for the Post Falls Chamber of Commerce.

According to Coeur d’Alene police, Phillips and Burgess argued with Johnson at a downtown bar, the Underground, below Brix restaurant on Sherman Avenue, earlier Saturday night before running into him again as they rounded the corner of 3rd Street onto Sherman after leaving another bar.

Johnson was walking east on Sherman, police said.

“Witnesses stated the suspect exchanged words with the victims and then pulled a handgun and fired several rounds at that group of people,” police said in a news release. “Witnesses quickly overpowered the suspect and pulled him to the ground.”

Phillips was shot in the knee and transported to Kootenai Medical Center, where he is expected to survive. Burgess, who was shot in the abdomen, is “fighting for his life,” said Sgt. Christie Wood.

Johnson was treated for head injuries he suffered while being restrained by witnesses, police said. His jail booking photo shows numerous facial bruises.

“People were pretty forthcoming about tackling the guy and beating him up after the shooting,” Wood said. “There were just a ton of people down there that spilled out of the bars.”

Witnesses say bullets hit at least one parked car, which has been seized as evidence.

Johnson was booked into Kootenai County Jail at 8:20 a.m. Sunday on one count of attempted murder, according to jail records. He’s due in Kootenai County District Court today, a jail employee said.

The shooting closed Sherman Avenue from 2nd Street to 3rd Street.

The downtown bars had been packed with young people home for Christmas, Wood said.

“My son was probably 50 yards away,” Wood said.

In May, a college student home for Mother’s Day weekend died after being shot outside a downtown Coeur d’Alene nightspot.

Victim Tim Wolfe, 21, had argued with the suspect, Juan C. Aldana Villanueva, 22, at a bar earlier that night.

“It gets very personal for parents, even though these are adult children,” Wood said. “It’s very frightening to think about them getting in a bar fight and it turning tragic like that.”


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