COWETA COUNTY, Ga. - Agents with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation continue to look into a deputy-involved shooting in Coweta County that happened Wednesday. The Coweta County Sheriff’s Office released a video from a deputy’s dash cam showing the moment when accused shooter Michael Johnson first opened fire on officers Wednesday.
In the video, the deputy can be seen speaking with the driver and passenger in a red Toyota that the sheriff said he had just pulled over. FOX 5 was told the deputy believed he recognized the passenger as Johnson, a wanted Coweta County fugitive. The passenger gave the deputy a name, but he didn’t believe him. A moment later, he went back to his patrol SUV to view a picture of Johnson on a computer screen. The video then shows the passenger side of the car open and Johnson exit, while pulling out a handgun. The sound of bullets being fired and striking the patrol vehicle can also be heard followed by the deputy’s call for help.
Other deputies would soon surround the 21-year old just a few minutes later behind a Newnan car dealership. There, he is accused of opening fire a second time. This time they returned fire and killed Johnson. Sheriff Mike Yeager, who has reviewed the deputy’s body cam video which captured the actual shooting, praised his deputies’ actions.
“These deputies have the right to protect themselves as well as everyone else that is out there,” Sheriff Yeager said.
The woman driving the vehicle was placed in handcuffs during the incident. Deputies said they also found a 2-year-old child inside the car.
Sheriff Yeager released the dash cam video and said the body camera video will be released after the GBI investigation.
At the time of traffic stop, Sheriff Yeager said Michael Johnson had 10 felony warrants for his arrests. Most of them for armed robbery, including an April case where he’s accused of pulling the trigger in the victim’s face, but the gun didn’t go off. In May, Johnson was accused of punching his pregnant girlfriend in the face, causing a cut and drawing blood.