Fruita arrest tied to Denver drug shooting

A man wanted on suspicion of attempted murder in Denver was arrested Thursday night along with a woman at a home in Fruita.

Robert E. Johnston Jr., 41, of Commerce City, was taken into custody after Drug Task Force and SWAT officers of the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department executed a search warrant at 109 Peter Drive, Unit 4, in Fruita, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.

Johnston was wanted by the Denver Police Department on a warrant with a $1 million bond, in connection with the shooting of a man about 2 a.m. Thanksgiving Day at the intersection of Grove Street and Alameda Avenue in west Denver, according to Denver police spokesman Sonny Jackson. Johnston’s victim was shot in the back while fleeing from what detectives believe was a drug deal, Jackson said.

Jackson said he didn’t know the victim’s condition.

Grand Valley law enforcement agencies received information on Johnston’s whereabouts Thursday afternoon.  A woman who lives at the Peter Drive home, Jessie Perryman, 53, was stopped by officers and she confirmed that Johnston was at the home, the affidavit said.

Mesa County officers obtained a search warrant for the home to search for evidence in the Denver shooting investigation, including firearms, ammunition and blood. Just over 7 grams of suspected methamphetamine was found inside a metal box, which was in a bedroom believed to have been used by Perryman, the affidavit said.

Perryman was booked at Mesa County Jail on suspicion of distribution and possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Johnston also was booked on a suspected parole violation.


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