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Citation becomes arrest after man spits on and kicks officers

Crime Watch

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POCATELLO — A local man being cited and released for disturbing the peace and misdemeanor battery was instead arrested for battery on an officer.

What was to be a citation became a felony arrest for 40-year-old Shane Bradley Johnson after he allegedly hit and spit on officers, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

Johnson has been charged with misdemeanors for disturbing the peace and battery, along with felonies for propelling bodily fluid on an officer, possession of a controlled substance and two counts of battery on an officer, court documents show.

Officers from the Pocatello Police Department were dispatched to Station Square around 1 p.m. Friday following a 911 call. The caller claimed a man had battered another man on the sidewalk in front of the building after creating a disturbance inside.

When officers arrived, they spoke with the victim, who claimed the man, later identified as Johnson, hit him with a backpack then kicked him in the ribs. The victim showed the officers redness and an abrasion on his ribs, according to police reports.

According to the victim and witnesses, the altercation began when Johnson turned a Bluetooth speaker on at a “disturbing” volume. One customer in the building described the music as “blaring so loud” they believed one of the businesses inside the building was experiencing technical difficulties with a commercial sound system.

The victim told officers that after their confrontation, Johnson set off south down Main Street on foot.

Officers found Johnson, based on a description provided by the victim and witnesses, near the 500 block of Main Street. Reports show he was seen dancing down the street, apparently listening to music on headphones, while carrying a large bluetooth speaker.

Officers stopped Johnson for questioning, the affidavit says, and noted he seemed confused and unable to respond to questions. He did not know the day of the week and could not tell them when he last ate.

Officers, who had intended to cite and release Johnson for the incident, instead decided to transport him to Portneuf Medical Center for medical evaluation.

While attempting to load him into a police cruiser, Johnson began to spit on and kick officers. They were able to get a “spit sock” on Johnson, but not until after at least one of the officers was hit with the spit.

Johnson was transported to the Bannock County Jail and found to be in possession of 0.8 grams of marijuana. If he is found guilty of all charges, Johnson would face up to 17 years in prison and $104,000 in fines.

He is scheduled to appear in court Friday for arraignment.