Plea pact resolves accidental shooting case

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SANDPOINT — An Elmira man accused of accidentally shooting a minor in the face while target shooting pleaded guilty Tuesday to an amended charge, 1st District Court records show.

Brandon Guy Bowman was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and injuring another with a discharged firearm in connection with the May 2017 incident.

The boy, whose age was not listed in court documents but appears to be of high school age, suffered a grazing would that extended from below his chin to the side of his neck, according to court documents.

The injury was initially said to be from a motorcycle crash, although the boy’s mother doubted that explanation as there were no other injuries on him, court records indicate.

The felony possession and misdemeanor discharge offenses were the result of a Bonner County Sheriff’s Office investigation in which Bowman allegedly admitted to accidentally shooting the boy, according to a probable cause affidavit. Bowman was prohibited from possessing firearms due to 2007 conviction in Stevens County, Wash., for third-degree assault.

Bowman, 44, faced up to five years in prison on the weapons charge and up to six months in jail for the wounding charge. He was scheduled to stand trial on Tuesday, but entered into a pretrial settlement agreement which saw the dismissal of the wounding charge in exchange for a plea of guilt to amended charge of attempted unlawful possession of a firearm, which is punishable by up to two and a half years in prison.

The state is recommending a suspended prison term and 30 days of incarceration at the Bonner County Jail, in addition to probation. The prosecution has also agreed not to pursue any additional state charges or seek a federal firearms charge, court records show.

Bowman, who is free on bond, is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 3.

Keith Kinnaird can be reached by email at kkinnaird@bonnercountydailybee.com and follow him on Twitter @KeithDailyBee.

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