Coroner, police say more could have died in overnight shooting

By Paige Quiggins | 

One man is dead and five people were injured in an overnight shooting in Breathitt County, but some said they believe they are lucky to be alive.

“It just sounded like fire crackers going off,” said Breathitt County Sheriff Ray Clemons, who described the sound of the rounds of live ammo coming out of Danny Johnson's home on Kentucky 30 West in Canoe from his shotgun.

That's how Breathitt County Sheriff Ray Clemons describes the sound of the rounds of live ammo coming out of Danny Johnson's shotgun outside of his home... Officers called the coroner when things got out of control.

“I am sure down there it was quite a scene because I kept in contact with some of the guys,” said Breathitt County Coroner George Griffith.

Clemons said Kentucky State Police called for assistance from the sheriff’s office.

“The state and my boys got there first with the constable and when I got there he was still shooting at them,” said Clemons.

Police said before he was killed, Johnson shot two people in a vehicle and injured three officers. Deputies Marvin Reed and Steve McIntosh were hit with buckshot while Brenda Southwood and Larry Adams were treated and released from the hospital. Trooper Joey King was struck with buckshot in the face and is still in the hospital listed in good condition.

Griffith said while he normally responds at the scene, circumstances were different in this case. He said that based on the initial information he was given, things could have turned out even worse. He said he called three deputy coroners to assist him for the case.

“We thought there would be more, but luckily there wasn’t,” said Griffith.

“I had them all on stand by.”

Clemons said he believed he was thankful that others involved survived.

“They was very fortunate,” said Clemons.