15-year-old boy shot in New Castle | AspenTimes.com

15-year-old boy shot in New Castle

John Gardner
Glenwood Springs correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado

NEW CASTLE, Colo. – A Glenwood Springs man was arrested after allegedly shooting a 15-year-old boy in the stomach Tuesday night.

Wesley Kade Harris, 23, was arrested by Garfield County Sheriff’s deputies near the Apple Tree Mobile Home Park, south of New Castle, about 9:30 p.m.

Harris appeared in Garfield County District Court Wednesday afternoon and was advised of the charges against him; they included first-degree assault with a deadly weapon causing serious bodily injury, and child abuse, both felonies. Harris was also charged with tampering with evidence, a felony, and two misdemeanor counts of prohibited use of a weapon, and reckless endangerment.

According to an arrest affidavit, three witnesses told deputies they were at the residence, located at 5033 County Road 335 Space No. 46, along with Harris and the victim. One of the witnesses told deputies they had been drinking and Harris and the 15-year-old boy went outside to smoke a cigarette. A short time later the three witnesses said they heard a gunshot, the affidavit stated.

At that time the three witnesses went outside and found the boy lying on the porch deck bleeding from the lower left side of his stomach, the affidavit stated.

When deputies arrived on the scene, they found the boy lying on the porch with a woman applying pressure to his wound, according to the report.

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Harris had fled the scene and was later apprehended behind the Apple Tree Mall near the residence.

According to the affidavit, Harris smelled of alcohol and was “having trouble walking and standing.” Deputies could see what they believed to be a gun holster tucked in Harris’ pants, and the affidavit indicates Harris allegedly told deputies the gun was in his waist or on his person. However they did not find a gun on him. It was later located in the yard of the residence.

In court Wednesday, Magistrate Lain Leoniak asked prosecutor James Leuthauser about the condition of the victim. Leuthauser told Leoniak that the victim was in stable condition at Valley View Hospital.

Leoniak also asked Harris if he had any other prior convictions, to which Harris responded, “Maybe a speeding ticket.”

Leuthauser disputed Harris’ statement, saying that Harris has had at least three other drinking related convictions since 2002, including a DUI.

“There is a clear pattern of alcohol abuse here,” Leuthauser said. “This is a serious situation, a man has been shot.”

Leoniak set bond at $35,000. Harris is scheduled to reappear in front of Judge Gail Nichols for a formal filing of charges later this month.

According to a 2004 Post Independent report, Harris was on the other end of the gun when he was accidentally shot at a residence in Glenwood Springs when he was 18. The bullet hit Harris in the elbow, then went through his left side and out his right side. He spent four hours in surgery after the shooting.

jgardner@postindependent.com