MIDVALE, UT – Officials have released the bodycam footage from an incident that occurred this past February where authorities say a four-year-old opened fire on police who were in the process of arresting the child’s father at a Midvale McDonald’s drive-thru.
As previously reported, officers from the Unified Police Department were dispatched at approximately 1:30 p.m. on February 21st to a McDonald’s located off of 425 West 7200 South regarding a McDonald’s customer who allegedly brandished a firearm at employees.
The suspect, identified as 27-year-old Sadaat Johnson, had reportedly become irate with the eatery’s employees after receiving an incorrect order and had displayed a firearm while allegedly racking the slide.
Upon noticing the firearm, the employees told Johnson that they would correct his order and asked him to wait near the front of the restaurant while they prepared it – with the employees calling the police after having Johnson pull away from the drive-thru window.
Bodycam footage from the incident shows police arriving on the scene and approaching Johnson’s vehicle. Officers instructed the suspect to drop his phone and open his car door, to which Johnson complied up to that point but then refused to exit his vehicle.
After officers removed Johnson from the vehicle by force and were in the process of getting him in cuffs, an officer noticed a firearm being pointed from the rear window of Johnson’s vehicle. Said officer quickly alerted the officers on the scene about the firearm while simultaneously pushing the gun off to the side as the gun was fired.
Shortly after the round went off, the officers on scene realized that it was one of the children in the backseat of Johnson’s vehicle who fired the weapon. Luckily, officers were able to secure the weapon and neither the officers nor the children, ages three and four, were injured during the incident.
According to reports, the four-year-old told police following the incident that his father had placed the firearm behind the driver’s seat and told him, “He didn’t want to shoot the lady at the happy meal store,” and, “The police officer cannot open the door.”
The young boy reportedly admitted to police that he’d picked the gun up from behind the driver’s seat while his father was being arrested and shot it, “because he wanted his daddy back.”
Additionally, the arrest report read, “Johnson stated that he blacked out and that he did not remember brandishing the gun or racking a round at the McDonald’s employee,” while adding, “this was not the first time that his son had gotten ahold of his gun.”
In a statement issued in February following Johnson’s arrest, Sheriff Rosie Rivera claimed that an incident where a toddler is shooting at police officers is directly correlated to the anti-police rhetoric that has increased in recent years.
“To have an adult think it is okay to encourage a [four-year-old] to pull a firearm and shoot at police illustrates how out of hand the campaign against police has gotten.”
Johnson was later charged with child abuse, aggravated assault and interference with an arresting officer following the incident.