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WSP identifies man shot by Spokane police

UPDATED: Fri., Jan. 17, 2014, 8:30 p.m.

The man shot by Spokane police in East Spokane near Truth Ministries shelter Thursday night is expected to survive and faces an assault charge related to the incident.

Aaron D. Johnson, 29, was shot after a report came to police that a man was threatening people with a knife at the shelter, according to police. Officers found him in an alley behind the shelter.

The Washington State Patrol, which is leading the investigation into the incident, said Johnson will be charged with second-degree assault. He remains hospitalized at Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center and is expected to survive, police spokeswoman Monique Cotton said Friday.

Police said Johnson refused orders to drop the knife and advanced on officers even after they used a Taser on him. Two officers fired their guns, wounding Johnson. Their names have not yet been released.

In 2013, Johnson was sentenced to 364 days in jail and 24 months probation for two counts of fourth-degree assault as well as eight months in jail with credit given for 247 days served after he pleaded guilty to domestic violence-riot.

A man who declined to provide his name and who lives on East First Avenue within a block of the shooting said he heard six shots while on his front porch working on a bike.

“It was pretty fast,” he said. “If it was a tad faster, it would have sounded like a bundle of firecrackers going off.”

Sabrina Marks, who also lives less than a block away, said she heard no shots, but that there was a lot of activity in her home at the time from the TV and visiting family members. She said she frequently hears shots fired in the neighborhood.

“It’s terrible how Spokane has gotten so rough,” she said. “We just lock the doors, close the blinds and keep the kids low.”