Savannah man involved in City Market shooting sentenced to federal prison for illegal gun possession

A Chatham County man who fired multiple shots that wounded two people in a crowded outdoor Savannah plaza has been sentenced to more than 10 years in federal prison.

Joshua Bowser, 29, of Savannah, was sentenced to 125 months in prison after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm and Ammunition by a Convicted Felon, said Jill E. Steinberg, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. U.S. District Court Chief Judge R. Stan Baker also ordered Bowser to serve three years of supervised release upon completion of his prison term.

There is no parole in the federal system.

“Joshua Bowser demonstrated blatant disregard for the safety of hundreds of residents and visitors to Savannah’s popular City Market, wounding two people while indiscriminately firing multiple shots into a crowd,” said U.S. Attorney Steinberg. “With our Savannah law enforcement partners, we will continue our work to hold accountable those who illegally possess guns and threaten the safety of our communities.”

As described in court documents and testimony, Bowser and another man were involved in a brief altercation shortly before 2 a.m. on Nov. 6, 2022, in Savannah’s City Market, near Jefferson and West St. Julian streets, when the other man struck Bowser and then backed away. As the unarmed man turned to walk away from Bowser, Bowser pulled a 9mm semiautomatic firearm from his waistband and fired at least six to eight times as the man fled.

Bullets struck the fleeing man and a female bystander, both of whom were transported to a hospital and treated for gunshot wounds. Both victims survived. Savannah police officers later that day located Bowser and arrested him on a state warrant. Bowser pled guilty to the federal charge in February.

At sentencing, Chief Judge Baker agreed to the government’s request to enhance Bowser’s sentence on the firearms charge because his conduct constituted attempted murder, and because his actions caused serious bodily injury.

“Joshua Bowser is a very violent individual who displays a total lack of concern for the lives of others.  This sentence represents the seriousness of his crime,” said Beau Kolodka, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Atlanta Field Office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. “This sentence also ensures that Bowser will not be able to hurt or terrorize anyone else for a very long time.”

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the Savannah Police Department, and prosecuted for the United States by Southern District of Georgia Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Makeia R. Jonese.

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