Man killed in officer-involved shooting outside Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office has history of arrests

Joshua Michael Johnson. Jan. 2021 file photo: Salt Lake County

SALT LAKE COUNTY, Utah, April 13, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — The man who was killed in an officer-involved shooting Saturday outside the Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office has been identified as Joshua Michael Johnson, 31.

Johnson died in an exchange of gunfire which seriously wounded two sheriff’s deputies who were working on a routine security detail when the incident occurred.

Deputy Leland Grossett lost an eye in the shooting. He was released from the hospital Monday, after surgery.

Deputy Joshua Buerke was shot in the face, with a bullet reportedly grazing his cheek. He was released from the hospital the day of the shooting.

A check of court records shows Johnson had a number of brushes with the law since at least age 19, the first time of his arrest as an adult.

Since 2013, he had been convicted of theft, retail theft, burglary, and multiple counts of burglary of a vehicle. Many other charges have been dismissed in connection with plea deals.

At the time of the shooting, Johnson had an active warrant for his arrest, court documents show. That warrant was related to an Aug. 27, 2018 incident, in which Johnson was charged with burglary of a vehicle, a class A misdemeanor; and use or possession of drug paraphernalia, a class B misdemeanor.

According to court records, Johnson’s most recent arrest was on Jan. 1, 2021, when he ended up being charged with a second-degree felony for allegedly buying heroin on the 800 block of W. North Temple Street.


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