At around 7:50 p.m. on Tuesday, a Missoula County Sheriff’s Office Deputy observed a vehicle driving erratically on South Avenue. The deputy initiated a traffic stop and the driver of the vehicle, 62-year-old John Bryan, exited the vehicle and approached the deputy.

The deputy told him to remain in his vehicle, but Bryan disregarded the order. When Bryan got close to the deputy, the deputy smelled the odor of an alcoholic beverage.

The deputy ordered Bryan to remain at the front of his patrol vehicle, but Bryan ignored the order and walked back towards his car. The deputy observed what appeared to be a knife in Bryan’s pocket. In order to keep Bryan from getting back into his vehicle, the deputy grabbed Bryan’s arm. Bryan immediately began to resist and pulled his arm away.

The deputy told Bryan he was being detained, but Bryan continued to pull his arms away and resisted being placed in handcuffs. The deputy took Bryan to the ground to gain control of him. Once Bryan had been placed in handcuffs, the deputy removed the knife from Bryan’s pocket.

When other officers arrived on scene, Bryan made several statements about killing law enforcement and he told one office that he was going to kill him. Deputy County Attorney Carrie Garber explains.

“It is the state’s understanding that the defendant has prior military training and therefore his threats are something we are taking extremely seriously,” Garber said. “He physically resisted, refused to follow the instructions of the officers, and then behaved in a very disorderly fashion while at the hospital. He threatened to actually bit the staff at the hospital. From all of the officer’s training and experience, the defendant was obviously impaired while driving.”

Security staff at the hospital placed a spit hood on Bryan so he could not bite anyone. However, Bryan continued to be uncooperative. After the blood draw, a deputy transported Bryan to Jail.

Bryan was charged with threats or improper influence in official and political matters, which is a felony. He was also charged with resisting arrest, obstructing peace officers, disorderly conduct, and driving under the influence. Judge Alex Beal set Bryan’s bail at $10,000. Bryan's charging documents can be found here.

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