MADISON TOWNSHIP, Ohio (WJW) – Coaches, along with middle school wrestler Hunter Hutchson, were driving Friday morning to the Schottenstein Center in Columbus for the high school wrestling championships when their school pickup truck was suddenly on the target of a gunman on the beach. Open lanes of the highway 71.
Police identified the gunman as 21-year-old Jonathan Myers, who is believed to have crashed his vehicle at a checkpoint on the northern lanes of the highway around 10 a.m. Friday.
ODOT cameras appear showing him exchanging words with another person on the side of the highway.
Shortly afterwards, he was seen fleeing from the police on the open lanes of the highway, then turning and firing in their direction.
On the southbound lanes was the pickup truck from Madison High School.
“According to our coach, the traffic seemed to be slowing down and he was in the process of evading the slowed down traffic and noticed that there was a man on the highway with a gun and he aimed at him and fired at them,” said Chief Superintendent Rob. Peterson.
The bullet apparently hit, but peeked out of the van’s windshield, leaving only a small spider crack in the glass.
“They pretty much described it as surrealistic. You never expect anything like that to happen and they were really, I think, shocked by it like everyone else would do, but kept their sanity and a little further down the road, stopped and called 911 and started the process of working with Columbus. “The Department of Police is handling the issue,” Peterson said.
The van had five people, including coaches and at least one wrestler that Peterson said was sleeping in the back seat at the time.
No one in the van was injured.
Columbus police reported a number of additional calls from cars that were shot but without further casualties.
Myers was hit by repeated police gunfire but was not seriously injured. He has since been charged with attempted murder in aggravated circumstances for shooting at uniformed police officers, according to court documents, and has been held without charge.
Coaches have made statements to many police agencies involved in the investigation and Hutchson was able to compete in his wrestling competition, taking fourth place in the 190 weight class.
“You think of the thousands of vehicles going down I-71 on a daily basis, and unfortunately we were there at exactly the same time. However, the fact that we went through it without any injuries or anything to any of our kids or our employees, we just feel berry “Luckily, we’re very happy that this is how it went,” Peterson said.
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