An Alder man was charged with felony assault with a weapon and criminal endangerment in Madison County Justice Court on Friday after allegedly shooting from the window of his sport utility vehicle while driving next to another car on MT Highway 287 on Thursday night.
According to an affidavit of probable cause, witnesses said an SUV driven by Ryan David Maddison pulled along side their car as they traveled south on MT Highway 287 around 7 p.m. on Thursday evening. The witnesses said Maddison yelled threats and profanities at them before firing multiple shots in the direction of their vehicle, causing the teenage driver and two passengers to fear for their lives. The driver proceeded to pull into a driveway near the intersection of MT Highway 287 and Sand Coulee Road, where Maddison followed the car and confronted the driver once the vehicle was parked, ordering the driver to get out of the car at gunpoint.
According to the affidavit, the driver then recognized Maddison who, upon seeing there were other passengers in the vehicle, explained he was playing a prank and left without further incident. Maddison was also cited for reckless driving, discharging a firearm from a roadway and having expired registration on the 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe involved in the incident.
Bond was set for Maddison at $25,000 on Friday. As one of the conditions of his release Maddison is required to wear a secure continuous remote alcohol monitor bracelet around his ankle.
In a press release, Madison County Undersheriff Roger Thompson said that the incident was not a case of “road rage.”
“The public is sensitive to incidents involving firearms right now both here in Madison County and across the country. There are those who want to group all gun owners together. That is unfair because of the action of a few. There is a sincere trust between the gun owning public and law enforcement who believe in freedom and responsibility. But we still must be ready to deal with problems when they arise and realize they are the exception and not the rule.”