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‘He was right on my bumper’: Suspects chase, shoot at Puyallup student driving home from school

A Puyallup student told KIRO 7 News that two suspects chased after him, while he was driving home from school, and shot at him multiple times.

KIRO 7 News spoke with Ben Johnson, 17, who attends Rogers High School in Puyallup.

Johnson said a driver traveling a good distance ahead of him stopped his vehicle in the middle of the road on 74th Avenue on Nov. 29.

The driver, who wore a blue beanie, got out of the dark blue Mazda vehicle and pointed a gun at him, he told KIRO 7 News.

“There was a girl in the passenger. She was taking a video of it with her phone. He added, “I had two seconds. He was running up to me with a gun. And pointing it at me.”

“It’s just a really weird feeling to just turning the corner to someone who’s holding a gun at your windshield, and you just have nowhere to go. He’s in the middle of the road,” he added.

KIRO 7 News spoke with a woman on the phone, who said she witnessed the incident.

She wanted to remain anonymous.

“It was absolutely terrifying. Absolutely terrifying. Lately, we’ve been seeing a little bit more of drug crime, but something like that, like a gun being pulled out, it’s horrific.”

She added, “The vehicle stopped and someone jumped out with a gun. That fast.”

Johnson said he threw his truck in reverse and immediately backed up.

He tried to drive away, he said, but the suspects chased after him.

The suspects shot at him once on 86th Avenue, he said, and seven more times down the stretch of the road.

Johnson said he was able to get away, while he hid inside a stall of the Brown Bear Car Wash on Meridian Avenue East where he called 911 and texted his mother for help.

Johnson was not injured.

KIRO 7 News asked Johnson if he knew what may have caused the wild chain of events.

“This is such a random thing because I had done nothing wrong. No road rage or anything. I would understand the reasoning if I was following him really close or something, but I was genuinely just driving,” he said.

“That’s what keeps me up at night. I just don’t know why. It would be different and cause closure if I knew what I did, but I was simply driving home the speed limit. I wasn’t riding his bumper or anything. And it wasn’t like he was following me,” he added.

A spokesperson for the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department said deputies are investigating have already spoken with the victim and a witness, and the investigation is ongoing.

“I would have never thought I would get ever shot at, let alone in my neighborhood, and let alone for absolutely doing nothing,” Johnson said.

KIRO 7 News also spoke with Jessy Sackman, Johnson’s mother.

Sackman was at an elementary school watching teachers read to students when she received a text from her son asking for help.

“My stomach dropped,” she said.

“Given the South Hill mall shooting the day before, what was going through my mind is I just can’t believe this is happening,” Sackman said after Pierce County deputies said they had shot a suspect wanted for a number of violent felonies in Puyallup on Tuesday.

Sackman said her family is left worried amid the uncertainty as deputies search for the people involved in this case.

She is asking for other witnesses to come forward.

“We don’t feel safe. And I don’t feel safe for my son. I don’t feel safe for him driving his truck.” She added, “That is not going to change for a while.”

If you have any information that can help deputies, you’re asked to call 911.