Man facing assault charge after shooting

John Jacob Wool

Paul Johnson

MONTROSE — A Montrose County man accused of shooting his neighbor’s wife with a shotgun was advised in court Thursday he faces a charge of second-degree assault causing bodily injury.

John Jacob Wool, 52, along with his neighbor Paul Johnson, 66, live in the rural area 15 miles west of U.S. Highway 50 on Escalante Canyon Road, and according to court records the two have an ongoing dispute.

Both were arrested as a result of a Nov. 23 incident on Escalante Canyon Road in which Patricia Johnson, 66, was struck by pellets from a shotgun blast. Wool was arrested the night of Nov. 23, while Paul Johnson was arrested Tuesday and also faces a charge of second-degree assault.

Paul Johnson told police he was heading home on Escalante Canyon Road and was at the corner near Standing Rock when his vehicle was run off the road by Wool. Johnson said he got out of his vehicle to inspect it for damage and saw Wool backing his truck toward him, according an arrest affidavit.

“Paul (Johnson) informed me he had had several altercations with John (Wool) in the past,” an investigator wrote in the affidavit.

Johnson said he grabbed a can of pepper spray and started walking toward Wool’s vehicle, and Wool exited his truck with a shotgun, the affidavit said. Johnson told authorities he then started spraying Wool with the pepper spray and emptied the can on Wool, according to the affidavit. Johnson said he heard the gun go off, then heard his wife scream and saw she had been hit by pellets.

Wool said Johnson walked up to Wool’s driver-side door while Wool was inside the cab and used the pepper spray on him, the affidavit said. Wool said Johnson again doused him with pepper spray as he got out of the cab.

“John (Wool) stated he then grabbed his shotgun (and) fired a round out the window in self defense. John (Wool) stated he heard Patricia scream. John (Wool) stated he could not see where he shot due to the pepper spray in his eyes,” the affidavit said.

Patricia was taken to St. Mary’s Hospital and is recovering from her injuries.

Court records show Paul Johnson was granted a restraining order against Wool in 2009 prohibiting “contact of any kind.”

Wool’s next Montrose County Court date is set for Dec. 16, while Paul Johnson is due in court Dec. 8.


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