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Gillette man sentenced to serve ten to twelve years for lunging at WHP Trooper with a knife

(Casper, Wyo.) - After pleading guilty to two charges of aggravated assault and battery and one count of possession of a controlled substance, twenty-two year old James Lynn Johnson was sentenced this morning in District Court. ​ Johnson was ordered to serve ten to twelve years in the Wyoming State Penitentiary, according to reports. According to court reports, Johnson lunged at Wyoming Highway Patrol trooper and another motorist during an altercation on Interstate 25 near milepost 208 in May 2015. The Natrona County Sheriff’s Office investigated the incident since it involved one of the Highway Patrol troopers in the alleged assault. The WHP trooper stopped to assist the motorist, identified as Johnson, when his vehicle broke down at approximately 6:30pm on I-25. When the trooper had inquired about the driver’s background, he discovered a warrant from Gillette regarding a charge of driving while under suspension. When the trooper returned to Johnson’s vehicle to inform him of the warrant, Johnson allegedly dove into the vehicle, grabbing a five-inch knife with a “gut hook” from the center console and lunged at the trooper. During the altercation with the trooper, Johnson ran across the southbound lanes into the northbound lanes of I-25 attempting to stop vehicles while brandishing the knife. With his service weapon drawn, the trooper attempted to stop Johnson during his attempts to halt at least three vehicles, according to the affidavit. Johnson returned to the southbound lane where one motorist was halting for what appeared to him to be a police checkpoint, he was met by Johnson and the knife to his open window. When the motorist failed to listen to Johnson’s demands for a ride, he allegedly lunged at the motorist, hitting the pillar of the door, according to the affidavit. During that short time, the trooper advised the motorists to “go, go, go,” as they drove off, Johnson hung onto the vehicle for approximately 50 to 60 feet. When the vehicle stopped, the motorists fled on foot, taking the keys as Johnson entered the vehicle, according to the report. During the fight for the door with the motorist, the witness recalled that Johnson yelled at the trooper, “I want to die, shoot me,” according to the report. The trooper was able to place Johnson in custody as he sat in the motorist’s vehicle. Officers conducted a search of Johnson’s vehicle where they located approximately 22.5 grams of methamphetamine, according to court records. #oilcity #news #county17