‘I’ve never seen anything like this in my career’: 4-year-old knew how to handle gun in attempted shooting

Feb 22, 2022, 5:30 PM | Updated: Jun 13, 2022, 4:48 pm

MIDVALE, Utah — A 4-year-old boy who fired a handgun at officers while his dad was being arrested knew how to handle a gun, according to Salt Lake County Sheriff Rosie Rivera and newly released jail documents.

“I’ve never seen anything like this in my career,” Rivera said about what went down at a McDonald’s in Midvale Monday afternoon. “You would not believe the size of this kid, just a small, small 4-year-old.”

Police said it started when the boy’s father, Sadaat Johnson, 27, was reported showing a handgun at a Mcdonald’s employee after getting upset about an incorrect order. As he was being arrested Rivera said a witness heard him tell his son to shoot the gun at police. Rivera says the child knew what he was doing.

“It’s a large handgun. To see that a child so small, could know how to pick up that firearm point it at police officers and fire it. That tells you somebody worked with him in training and taught him how to do that,” she said.

According to the probable cause statement, Johnson “did admit that this was not the first time that his son had gotten a hold of his gun.” But he also told officers “he had blacked out and that he didn’t remember the gun or racking a round at the McDonald’s employee.”

Fortunately the officer swatted the barrel of the gun just as it went off and was also quick to yell “kid, kid, kid” so the other officers didn’t open fire on the boy and a younger kid in the back of the car.

“Our officer that deflected that firearm really is a hero today because he saved somebody’s life. I truly believe that,” Rivera said.

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‘I’ve never seen anything like this in my career’: 4-year-old knew how to handle gun in attempted shooting