Kwik Trip shooting threats, Kenosha man charged

Jonathan Petersen

A Kenosha man is charged with 16 counts of making terrorist threats after he allegedly went into a Kwik Trip and threatened to kill people.

Prosecutors say Jonathan Petersen, 21, went to the gas station in search of someone who had a temporary restraining order filed against him.

Kenosha County sheriff's deputies were called to the Kwik Trip near 31st Street and Green Bay Road on June 13. It was reported that an armed man, since identified as Petersen, was inside threatening to "kill people or himself" while pointing a gun at an employee.

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A criminal complaint states the deputies told Petersen they were "not there to shoot him and ordered him to drop his gun." He tossed his gun on the counter and backed away, grabbing a knife and pressing it to his neck.

The reported gun in question turned out to be a BB gun that "appeared to be a legitimate rifle with no bright colored end cap on the barrel and a removable metal magazine."

Kenosha County Sheriff's Department

During the incident, the complaint states, Petersen repeatedly said "he wanted to die and told deputies to shoot him." A deputy tased Petersen twice before being able to place him in handcuffs. Once in handcuffs, Petersen allegedly said he should have "sliced" himself and asked if deputies would shoot him if he "tried to run."

Multiple witness told deputies they saw Petersen armed with a gun. One witness recounted hearing Peterson tell a female employee "I'm going to shoot someone" while making suicidal threats, according to the complaint. Petersen was seen on surveillance walking into the gas station and pointing his gun at people.

Five employees were on-duty at the time, and at least four customers were at the gas station. One customer, the complaint states, tried to stop people from going inside the store after he saw Petersen go in with the gun. The complaint states deputies reviewed surveillance from the store.

Once in custody, the complaint states Petersen told authorities he went into the Kwik Trip with "an airsoft gun and a knife" and walked up to someone he "had an issue with in the past." Petersen said he knew the person worked at the gas station and that he "wanted to scare" that person and others. There was an active protection order against Peterson, which he said he did not know about, regarding that employee.

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Deputies interviewed that person, who was "extremely emotional, crying at times, and appeared traumatized by the incident." The person said Petersen "had a history of harassing and stalking" her, per the complaint.

Petersen told the person that "he had been planning this for months, ever since the restraining order hearing," per the complaint. During that hearing, the person told deputies that she remembered Petersen asking the judge if he could still buy a gun. The restraining order was entered on April 18, 2022 and was set to expire on that date in 2024.

The person told authorities that, during the incident, Petersen called out to her and pointed a gun directly at her – saying he would shoot if anyone came near them. The complaint states the person asked Petersen why he was doing this, and he answered "I have already ruined my life" and that he was "going to get back at everyone that did him wrong." The person said Petersen added that once he was done at Kwik Trip he was going "to Pick 'n Save to do the same thing" and that he was would kill himself when it was done.

In all, Petersen is charged with:

  • Terrorist threats, use of a dangerous weapon (16 counts)
  • Violation of a temporary restraining order

Petersen made his initial court appearance on June 15, his cash bond set at $500,000. He is due back in court on June 23.