Man charged with murder in South Anchorage gas station shooting
The man accused of shooting another man to death at a South Anchorage gas station was arraigned in jail court Thursday afternoon.
Nineteen-year-old Brandon Merritt was killed Wednesday night in front of an Abbott Road Holiday gas station. Andrew Robertson-Goughnour, 23, has been charged with murder in the first and second degree in connection with Merritt’s death.
According to charging documents, Merritt and Goughnour started arguing because Goughnour was irritated that Merritt was “staring him down.”
Merritt was a passenger in a sedan on its way out of the parking lot and Goughnour was nearby pumping gas when the event started to unfold, court documents state. When they got into a “verbal altercation,” Merritt got out of the car and began walking toward Goughner, who then fired a weapon.
Merritt was killed by a single gunshot wound, according to Anchorage Police Department spokesperson Jennifer Castro.
“It does sound ridiculous for what it is, and it’s unfortunate that someone lost their life over something like that,” Castro said.
Anchorage resident Floyd Hall said he was driving down Abbott Road with a friend when the shooting happened. He said he never saw Merritt getting physically aggressive.
“He wasn’t rushing towards him,” Hall explained. “He was walking [and] talking. You know, they were having words. But it wasn’t like he was right on him, ready to hit him or hurt him.”
After Merritt was shot, his friends began to yell at Goughner, according to Hall. He said he was screaming at Goughner to put the gun away.
“Finally, the guy holstered his gun. One of the kids ran up and checked on the victim and you could tell he wasn’t breathing. I mean it was pretty quick. He went quickly,” said Hall.
Hall said he did not get any sleep following the shooting.
“You watch a kid take his last breath,” said Hall. “It shouldn’t have happened.”
Police said Goughner and Merritt were strangers prior to their argument.