Couple dodges bullets in West Knoxville road-rage shooting

Published: Aug. 30, 2017 at 5:24 PM EDT
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Chad Brackett and his girlfriend faced an alarming, almost deadly encounter while merging on to Interstate 1-40 Monday.

"He's sticking a Glock 9 millimeter out the window in front of his girlfriend's face and fires two shots at us," said Chad Brackett. "Looking down the barrel of a gun that was six feet away from us was pretty eerie," he added.

Knoxville police said Bradley Johnston was behind the trigger.

Police reports showed Johnston almost hit the couple in their Jeep as they were attempting to head up I-40 east toward Maryville.

"He come over into our left hand lane and almost side swiped us," said Brackett. "He didn't get flipped off, I didn't throw my hands up in the air; we just thought, 'Oh man we just about got hit,'" he continued.

It's what happened next on the Interstate ramp that could've been a lot worse.

"When I gassed it to go around him, that's when he rolled the window down and took two shots at us, and the gun was pointed right at us," said Brackett. "I mean, if we wouldn't have been moving, it probably would've hit us or our vehicle," he added.

Brackett said his Jeep wasn't damaged, but his girlfriend's nerves took a blow.

"It scared her to death," said Brackett. "She was shaken up pretty bad," he continued.

Brackett said he called 911 while trailing Johnston with enough distance between them. Johnston was later pulled over in Blount County, where police said he was arrested.

"I didn't want to get too close in case he started shooting at us again, but I did want to make sure police caught up with him," said Bracket.

While searching Johnston's car, officers said they found the gun he's accused of using to shoot at Brackett and his girlfriend.

Johnston is now in jail charged with reckless endangerment with a deadly weapon.