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Armed man shot by Ogden police is freed from jail to undergo mental health treatment

By Mark Shenefelt standard-Examiner - | Jan 1, 2021
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This photo taken from security camera footage shows a man identified as Gavin Johansen collapsing after being shot by an Ogden police officer Oct. 27, 2020. The video has been edited to highlight weapons carried by Johansen: a knife, circled in green, and a pellet gun, circled in red.

OGDEN — An Ogden man shot by a police officer while approaching her with a knife and a pellet gun is free from jail to undergo mental health treatment.

Gavin Johansen, 18, originally was held without bail after 2nd District Judge Jennifer Valencia ruled in November that prosecutors had demonstrated he would be a danger to the community if set free pending trial.

An Ogden police officer fired several shots at Johansen, hitting him once, as he ran out of a house toward the officer Oct. 27, according to police.

Johansen was freed from jail Dec. 21 to enter the Live for Life Sequoia Residential Treatment Center in West Jordan, court records show.

In a detention hearing Dec. 18, Johansen’s attorney, Shawn Smith, argued Johansen could be released safely with conditions.

Valencia ordered that Johansen be equipped with an ankle monitor restricting him to the Live for Life campus.

She also ordered him to have no contact with victims or witnesses and that he be allowed no visits home.

The “zero tolerance” release said any violations would require his return to jail.

A new state bail law that took effect Oct. 1 has resulted in more frequent detention hearings for suspects.

There is now a presumption of release for offenders accused of lower-level crimes, and a rebuttable presumption of detention for suspects in first-degree felonies, like murder, attempted murder, rape and aggravated kidnapping.

Sponsors say the law is intended to focus detention decisions on risk instead of a defendant’s ability to pay cash bail.

In October, charging documents said Johansen left a treatment program, where he had been enrolled after felony convictions in juvenile court, and went to his mother’s home, saying he intended to commit suicide.

Johansen allegedly grabbed a shotgun at the home and grappled with a family friend who tried to take it away, then ran outside, the arrest affidavit said.

Johansen recovered at a hospital from a gunshot wound in his abdomen and then was arrested and taken to the Weber County Jail.

He is charged with second-degree felony armed assault against a police officer; third-degree felony aggravated assault for allegedly choking the family friend; and second-degree felony possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person.

Johansen is due in court again Wednesday.


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