The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Crime & Courts

April 17, 2014

Reeds man granted probation in case involving gunshots

A Jasper County judge has granted suspended sentences to a rural Reeds man who tore up a campsite with his truck in a drunken rage and fired a gun at another driver and a sheriff’s deputy.

James D. Snare pleaded guilty Jan. 10 to first-degree assault, second-degree assault and unlawful use of a weapon in connection with an incident June 9 of last year beneath a bridge on Missouri Highway 37, north of the intersection with Gum Road in eastern Jasper County. As part of his plea deal, three other felony counts that Snare was facing from the incident were dismissed.

Circuit Judge Gayle Crane assessed the defendant prison terms of 10 years and seven years for the assault convictions and four years for the weapon conviction, but suspended execution of all three and placed him on supervised probation for five years.

According to a probable-cause affidavit, Snare confronted three men and a woman at a campsite beneath the bridge and was waving a pistol drunkenly before driving his truck at them, running over their tents and crashing into a motorcycle belonging to one of them.

The affidavit states that he then went home, got an older truck and was returning to the scene when he was met on the highway by a deputy responding to a call reporting the incident.

Snare pointed the pistol out the window of his truck and fired six shots in the direction of the driver in front of him and the deputy’s car in the oncoming lane before being apprehended.

No one was injured in the shooting or by his preceding acts at the campsite, according to the affidavit.

The judge ordered that Snare have no contact with the victims involved, particularly the woman and her family, and that he pay $7,700 in restitution for damage to the motorcycle and other losses.

He also must complete a work program he is currently enrolled in.

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