Utah man charged with 2 felonies after son allegedly fires gun after McDonald’s drive-thru dispute

Mar 1, 2022, 3:28 PM | Updated: 5:55 pm
Police search Sadaat Johnson's car after the shooting in a drive-through. (KSL TV)...
Police search Sadaat Johnson's car after the shooting in a drive-through. (KSL TV)

MIDVALE, Utah — A Utah man is in jail after a shot was allegedly fired by his 4-year-old child after a confrontation at a McDonald’s drive-thru window.

Police, in probable cause documents filed in Third District Court, allege Sadaat Shamille Johnson, 27 is charged with aggravated assault, felony child abuse and interference with an arresting officer. A single shot was fired after police arrived, but nobody was struck by the bullet.

The child told police he “got the gun and shot the police because he wanted his daddy back,” after Johnson was taken into custody.

Deputies arrested Johnson on Feb. 21 when the child is said to have fired the gun after police responded to an emergency call claiming Johnson showed employees a gun during a dispute about the contents of a food order.

The child is said to have retrieved a gun from inside a car and pointed it out toward police.

“I’ve never seen anything like this in my career,” Salt Lake County Sheriff Rosie Rivera said on the day of the incident. “You would not believe the size of this kid, just a small, small 4-year-old.”

The new court documents state Johson first flashed a gun at a restaurant employee because he was upset about what he claimed was an incorrect order. The documents say he was swearing at the drive-up window worker and slapped a receipt from a McDonald’s employee’s hand. He is then said to have become more agitated and grabbed a firearm off the passenger seat and “racked it, ejecting a bullet” before placing the gun on the passenger seat and continuing the verbal dispute.

Documents say the worker then shut the “drive-thru window, and that Johnson then hit it. Johnson then grabbed the firearm and began looking at it.”

The fast-food worker feared he might shoot at her or others and called 9-1-1.

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


Unified Police Department officers responded to the emergency call and said they found Johnson sitting in the driver’s seat of the vehicle with the doors locked and the windows up. Police ordered Johnson to unlock the door or roll down the windows and wouldn’t comply at first.

“When Johnson finally unlocked the driver’s side door, he was taken out of the vehicle and placed on the ground,” according to documents. An officer noticed two young children in the back of the vehicle.

After Johnson was in custody, an officer was walking past the vehicle’s driver’s side window and saw a silver handgun emerge from inside the car. The officer used his right hand to sweep the gun upwards. It went off in the process, the bullet striking “the upper part of the McDonald’s building. The officer took a step back and yelled at the person inside the car to drop the gun. Peering inside the car, he “saw a small child looking at him.”

The 4-year-old was interviewed by police and said he “got the gun from behind the driver’s seat and that Johnson had put it there.”

Documents state the child said he “shot the police because he wanted his daddy back.”

The warrant ordered Johnson held without bail. 

The probable cause statement said Johnson admitted: “that this was not the first time that his son had gotten ahold of his gun.” But he also told officers he “blacked out and that he didn’t remember the gun or racking a round at the employee.” 

According to information from police on the day of the incident said the officer who swatted the barrel of the gun was also quick to yell “kid, kid, kid” so the other officers didn’t shoot at the children.

After he was informed of his Miranda rights, police said Johnson told them he “blacked out” for 30 seconds and denied brandishing the gun and racking it in front of the employee, despite these actions being captured on surveillance footage. He told police he moved the gun to the back of the vehicle where the child retrieved it because there was food sitting on it.

He also told police it wasn’t the first time the child “has gotten his hands on a gun and that he did not teach (him) bad things about police but only told him to ‘keep away’ from police if possible.”

The documents claim Johnson is a danger to the community, the victim and his children and requested he be held without bail, authorized on March 1.

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Utah man charged with 2 felonies after son allegedly fires gun after McDonald’s drive-thru dispute