ELYRIA — An Elyria woman who was at a party where a 21-year-old man accidentally shot himself in the head has been indicted on weapons charges.
Justine Wagner, 19, is accused of firing the .40-caliber semiautomatic pistol into a nearby house from the room at the Motel 9 where Ronald Jackson III was celebrating his birthday with a group of friends.
Elyria police Sgt. Kirk Smith said Wagner told police that she had fired the gun several hours before Jackson shot himself to death Feb. 3. Jackson’s body was found in the bathroom of the hotel room, and Lorain County Coroner Stephen Evans ruled his death an accidental shooting.
Police reported at the time of the shooting that Jackson had been playing with the gun in the bathroom before it went off.
County Prosecutor Dennis Will said several other people who were at the party also acknowledged firing the gun, but Wagner actually fired at a nearby house, which is a felony. Police later recovered the bullet she fired during their investigation of Jackson’s death.
“The gun was more or less treated in a casual or cavalier fashion,” Will said.
Wagner is charged with improperly discharging a firearm at a habitation, a felony, and discharge of a firearm on or near a prohibited premises.
She was being held in the Lorain County Jail on Tuesday night.
Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or firstname.lastname@example.org.