SANDPOINT — Mediation is being ordered in the case of a Blanchard man accused of shooting two Bonner County sheriff’s deputies who tried to arrest him.
Public Defender Janet Whitney and Deputy Prosecutor Katie Murdock moved jointly to voluntarily enter into mediation in an attempt to resolve the case against Adam Deacon Foster on Wednesday. First District Judge Barbara Buchanan approved the motion the same day, court records show.
Issues on the mediation table could include reduced charges, agreements regarding sentencing recommendations or a binding plea agreement which would guarantee the court’s adoption of sentencing recommendations, according to the order.
Senior 1st District Judge Steve Verby has been selected as mediator in the case, court record show.
Foster, 31, is charged with two counts of attempted first-degree murder for seriously wounding deputies Justin Penn and Michael Gagnon on Jan. 17. If convicted as charged, Foster faces the prospect of a lifelong prison sentence plus sentencing enhancements that would add up to 70 years to the sentence because he used a firearm during the commission of the crimes and inflicted great bodily harm on the deputies, a criminal complaint alleges.
Penn, 30, and Gagnon, 53, went to Foster’s home on Mountain View Road to arrest him on an outstanding warrant, according to court documents. Foster had also allegedly made remarks that he planned on killing someone and vowed to eliminate anyone who stood in his way, including law enforcement, according tocourt documents.
Foster bolted around the side of his home, took up a concealed position and opened fire on the deputies with a .357 magnum revolver when they came into his view, court documents indicate. Despite being hit by gunfire, the deputies returned fire and wounded Foster, who then surrendered.
Foster is being held in lieu of $2 million bail. His four-day jury trial remains set for Jan. 9, 2018.
Keith Kinnaird can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @KeithDailyBee.