A man accused of threatening to shoot his girlfriend before suffering an accidental gunshot wound to his buttocks was charged Thursday with felony assault with a weapon.

Johnathan William Hartman, 27, appeared in Justice Court by video from the county jail. Judge Pedro Hernandez set bond at $100,000 after a prosecutor said Hartman has four prior felony convictions, including a pending case in Missoula for writing bad checks.

Court records state the shooting incident in the Heights on Tuesday afternoon was sparked during an argument between Hartman and his girlfriend about his impending prison sentence in the Missoula case. The woman said Hartman bought a bottle of whiskey at a Main Street casino, began to drink from the bottle and then fired a pistol into the roof of the car.

The woman said Hartman then pointed the pistol at her, stuck it in her mouth and threatened to kill her. He removed the gun, and then fired a second shot by her ear. He then began to push and shove her inside the car, court records state.

Hartman drove away from the casino and apparently placed the pistol into the back of his waistband. The gun discharged into his buttocks while he was driving erratically on Lake Elmo Drive.

A short time later, officers found Hartman and the woman inside the car parked at a mobile home park off Lake Elmo Drive. Hartman was arrested after he was released from St. Vincent Healthcare, where he was treated for the gunshot wound.  

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