Matthew Richmond, 26, of Loon Lake, is being held on $100,000 bail in the Stevens County jail following an apparent “road rage” shooting incident last Friday night in the Loon Lake area. Richmond made a preliminary appearance on Monday in the Stevens County District Court on charges of First Degree Assault with a firearm.
Josh Pickens, 26, reportedly entered the Loon Lake Saloon and Grill at about 8:30 p.m. Friday evening and asked for help. According to witnesses, he was covered with blood after being shot in the upper shoulder portion of his body. The gunshot apparently severed his carotid artery.
The shooting occurred after Richmond and Pickens had an argument following an incident where one of them “cut off” the other on Highway 292 near Maple Street in Loon Lake.
Following a verbal confrontation, Pickens reportedly attempted to leave the scene but was initially blocked by Richmond. Richmond allegedly reached for a handgun in his car and began shooting at Pickens as he finally drove away.
The sheriff says Richmond admitted to shooting at Pickens’ car, but says he was aiming for the tires.
Pickens reportedly drove three blocks to the Loon Lake Saloon and Grill where he asked for help. A patron attempted to stop the bleeding while 911 was called. Pickens was airlifted by Medstar to Sacred Heart Hospital where he was initially listed in critical condition.
Following the initial surgery to remove the bullet and repair his artery, Pickens was listed as stable in a medically induced coma until Sunday morning when he suffered a mild stroke and was returned to surgery. By Sunday evening, however, he was alert and able to write messages to his family.
Pickens’ sister, Kourtney, maintains a blog at kourtpick10.blogspot.com where she documents her brother’s hospitalization and family concerns.
Although the Stevens County Prosecuting Attorney could not be reached for comment, he was expected to file formal charges against Matthew Richmond this week in the Stevens County Superior Court.