Man appears in court in alleged assault along river

B.G. resident accused of pulling a gun during dispute

By Paris Achen, Columbian courts reporter

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A Battle Ground man appeared in Clark County Superior Court on Monday on suspicion of assaulting three people with a gun after they asked him to turn down the volume on music he and another friend were playing at a campsite along a Columbia River beach early Sunday.

Andrew J. Mortensen, 30, faces charges of first-degree assault and felony harassment at a Thursday arraignment hearing. Judge John Nichols held him in lieu of $50,000 bail and appointed Vancouver attorney Bob Vukanovich to defend him.

Vancouver police were called to the beach area in the 6400 block of Lower River Road just before 1 a.m. on a report of a verbal argument between multiple subjects.

During the verbal exchange, Mortensen threatened to "come across the river with a gun and shoot" the three victims, according to a court affidavit by Vancouver police Office Ron Wier.

He then boarded a boat and took it across to the opposite beach, where the victims were, Wier wrote.

He attempted to strike one of the victims, Scott Burkett, but missed, according to the court affidavit. Burkett responded by pushing Mortensen and placing him in a choke hold, Wier wrote.

Mortensen allegedly then pulled a pistol from his waistband and struck Burkett in the face with the butt of the gun, breaking Burkett's nose.

"He then pointed the gun at (Burkett), threatening to shoot and kill him while racking the slide to the gun," Wier wrote. "Andrew then pointed the gun directly into the face of (another victim, Joshua McDonald), while also threatening to shoot and kill him, telling (McDonald) to get his stuff and run."

When the third victim, Bianca Lujan, started to call 911, Mortensen also threatened to kill her, according to the affidavit.

"Andrew then jumped into the boat with his friend …, stating that they were going to return with more clips and kill them."

"(Expletive) the police," Mortensen allegedly shouted. "We have more guns. Tell them to come across the river."