Alleged killer pleads not guilty in shooting outside Fuel Fitness

·3 min read

Oct. 28—A transient man charged with murder in the alleged shooting death of the manager of Fuel Fitness in Kalispell last month pleaded not guilty Thursday morning in Flathead County District Court.

Johnathan Douglas Shaw, 35, is facing one charge of deliberate homicide and one charge of attempted deliberate homicide.

After a Flathead County Detention officer opened the door, Shaw entered Courtroom 3 in a wheelchair. He was seated next to his defense attorneys, Liam Gallagher and Ryan Hennen.

Shaw was shot by bystander William Keck after Shaw allegedly shot and killed Matthew Hurley on the morning of Sept. 16. Keck also was wounded in the shooting, but has recovered. Shaw spent time in Logan Health Kalispell until he was booked into jail on Sept. 29.

Flathead County was represented by Travis Ahner, Alisha Howard and John Donovan.

The courtroom was fuller than usual with several friends and family members of victim Matthew Hurley in attendance.

Flathead District Judge Dan Wilson asked Shaw if he understood the charges against him and the defendant said he did for the most part, but he said he was unsure of one section.

Wilson then went through the charges, possible penalties, his rights and Shaw indicated he understood them. Shaw said he was on medication, but said it didn't affect his ability to understand the court proceedings.

Shaw's next scheduled court hearing at which he is required to appear is a pretrial hearing on March 2, 2022. A jury trial is set for the week of April 18.

ACCORDING TO charging documents filed in the case against Shaw, officers from the Kalispell Police Department arrived at Fuel Fitness on the morning of Sept. 16, and found Hurley in a red shirt lying in the parking lot. An officer also saw another man lying face down on the ground. He was identified as Shaw and as he got to his knees, the officer could see a handgun on the ground in front of the accused man.

Another officer determined Hurley had been struck by multiple rounds. He was declared dead at the scene.

A third Kalispell police officer spoke with Matthew Underhill, an assistant manager at Fuel Fitness. Underhill said he and Hurley went to the parking lot to speak with Shaw, who had been living in the lot.

The three spoke about a refund of Shaw's gym membership and when Hurley told Shaw he would receive a partial refund of his fee, Shaw allegedly said, "Well, you are going to die" and started shooting at Hurley.

Underhill said he ran toward the gym and told William Keck what happened.

A Kalispell detective talked to Keck, who said he was in the gym and when he came out he heard what sounded like firecrackers popping and saw Underhill sprinting. When Underhill told Keck that Hurley had been shot, Keck ran to his vehicle and grabbed his pistol.

Keck saw Hurley on the ground and Shaw was getting into a truck by a trailer. Keck said he told Shaw to get out and when the door opened he said "two rounds came right at me."

Keck said he returned fire. He also said he realized he had been hit in the leg and ran back inside the gym.

Shaw could face a maximum term of 100 years in the Montana State Prison. Bail is set at $1 million.

Reporter Scott Shindledecker may be reached at 758-4441 or sshindledecker@dailyinterlake.com.

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