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Lemuel Johnson

Man pleads guilty in Kwik Trip gun case

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Lemuel A. Johnson, 54, N1357 Katie Ln., Bay City, pled guilty to possession of firearm by a felon in Pierce County Circuit Court and to a misdemeanor of intentionally pointing a firearm at a person. The charges result from an incident last August in River Falls. He will be sentenced at 11 a.m. Feb. 2, 2010.

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Johnson was facing these charges after allegedly pointing a gun at a couple inside their car at the Kwik Trip on South Main Street in River Falls on Aug. 2, according to the criminal complaint.

A 911 call was placed after Johnson left Kwik Trip. He was eventually pulled over by Pierce County Sheriff's deputies on 1000th Street in a "high-risk traffic stop." During the chase, Johnson tossed the gun, which law enforcement found five days later.

Johnson pointed the handgun at the 21-year-old mother of his granddaughter, and her 20-year-old boyfriend. The woman and Johnson's son were separated.

Johnson told authorities he claimed to have heard the boyfriend had abused the mother and his granddaughter, and both adults used marijuana and crack cocaine.

According to the complaint, a witness described what she saw.

"She had been at the gas pump when she saw a man going through the parking lot with a gun...She told (the investigator) that she saw the subject holding a silver, shiny gun near his waist...She told me that she was fearful for her own life and, after the subject had left, had hung up the gas pump and left.

"She stated that she was near shock and crying and upset and had difficulty driving home.

"She stated that she was still upset at this time and believed with near certainty that she was going to die when she saw that person with the gun."

Johnson also said what people mistook for a gun in his hand was just a cell phone.

Another witness at Kwik Trip who saw Johnson with a gun asked what was going on and he replied: "The (SOB) is beating my granddaughter, that's what's going on."

Before the Kwik Trip incident, the mother said she kept in touch with Johnson, got along with him and he had given his granddaughter a birthday outfit.

During the plea hearing, Johnson's attorney John Leunig said Johnson has been totally disabled since 2007 and has had significant medical issues. A disorderly conduct charge was dismissed as part of the agreement.

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Jason Schulte
Jason Schulte has been with the Herald since 2006. He covers County government and anything else that happens in Pierce County on a daily basis.
(715) 273-4334
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